What is a Trademark? A trademark™ is a form of protection used to brand or promote a product being offered in the market place in the form of a word, name, phrase, tag-line (Standard Text Characters) or symbol, graphic, color (Stylized and/or Design) or a combination of both used or intended to be used to identify and distinguish the products/services of one seller or provider from those of others, and to indicate the source of the products/services.
In addition, other trademark categories, such as those based on color, smell, sound, patterns or any distinguishing attribute by which an individual is readily identified, such as the well-known characteristics of celebrities may be protected. Note, the essential function of a trademark is to exclusively identify the commercial source or origin of products or services identified by the mark.
What is a Service Mark? A service mark (SM) is a mark similar to a trademark, except it a form of protection used to brand or promote a service being offered in the market place. The terms “trademark” and “mark” often are used to refer to both trademarks and service marks.
What is a Trade Name? A trade name or a business name is the name a business uses for commercial purposes. (The legal name is the name registered with the state secretary of state office, such as ____ Inc., LLC or Partnership or the name used for contracts.)