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Oscapes
10-29-2004, 12:53 PM
Has anyone had an problems using designoutpost.com for their logo?

Also, how do you know is someone else isn't using the same logo? How do you get a trademark for it?

tx_angler
10-29-2004, 02:24 PM
I've not used designoutpost.com but there are others on here that have and the results are very impressive.

Now on to the second question. 20 minutes ago I got off the telephone with the lady at the Trademark office for Texas (Secretary of State). I'm in the process of obtaining a trademark and have received two rejection letters but I think I'm finally through all the hoops.

This is what I learned:

1. Trade marks are used to brand a product, service marks are similar to trademarks but are used to brand a service. Marks do not just include logos, It can be anything that distinguishes your product/service from similar items. The shape of a Coca Cola glass bottle is a registered federal trademark.

2. Trademarks can be registered at the state level or the federal level. When you submit your application, they will do research to insure there are no others that are using a similar mark.

3. You can only register a trademark in a single category per a single fee ($50) in Texas. I was told that some people register the same trademark in 50+ categories. Example: you are selling t-shirts and register a trademark, you then decide to sell computers. Your trademark is not protected for the computer sales.

4. The lady STRONGLY recommended the use of a patent & trademark attorney to assist with the process and after having gone through this process I agree with her.

5. After you have a trademark, it is still your responsibility to enforce any trademark violation, because protection is not automatic nor provided by the registering agency.

6. Trademarks have an expiration date and must be renewed.

Now, this is just to get a trademark for use in Texas. I expect that it is even more involved at the Federal level.

Here are two links that may be useful:

Ohio Trademark (http://ohioline.osu.edu/cd-fact/1203.html)

Federal Trademark (http://www.uspto.gov/main/trademarks.htm)

My time involved to get a service mark in Texas was probably 30-40 man hours research and filing out forms. Calendar time is well over 90 days.

This may seem like a daunting task, but to distinguish your product/service from others you must complete it. I know a lady that owned a state trademark for a sandwich she called a "Ranger burger" and the nearby Army base (Ft. Benning) started advertising a similar sandwich and used the name she had registered on their Officer Club menus. She sued the US Army in federal court and won her case even though the Army attorneys claimed the state trademark had no jurisdiction on Federal land. Her burger is truly world famous because if you've been through Ranger school you have probably eaten at least one Ranger burger at the Four Winds Restaurant in Cusseta, GA. It is the closest restaurant to Camp Darby where every Ranger went through Phase 1 of Ranger school.

Oscapes
10-29-2004, 03:48 PM
WOW! That's very interesting. I'll have to look into it. I going to be getting a logo made up soon and I just wanted to know if I need a trademark or service mark. Thanks dude.

Team Gopher
10-29-2004, 09:03 PM
Hi Oscapes,

Here is a link (http://www.gophergraphics.com/index.cgi?page=artists) to hundreds of green industry logos that may inspire your own logo concept.

Green Dreams
10-30-2004, 02:49 PM
Sure wish I was fishin'...

I used designoutpost and was very, very happy. So you can't go wrong if you want your own, original piece.

As for the Trademark attorney... I have one here in Houston for a customer. When I launched, he came out and inspected my truck. To protect myself, he said I needed to put a small "sm" over my logos. He said that would cover me...