Where to Protect Trademarks Abroad

For the most part, where a business should protect its trademarks aligns with where the business uses or is likely to use those trademarks.  However, it can be helpful to benchmark a foreign filing strategy with what other businesses are doing, so here it the top ten list of countries where U.S. businesses file for trademark protection.

  1. China
  2. Canada
  3. Mexico
  4. Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market
  5. Brazil
  6. Australia
  7. Japan
  8. Republic of Korea
  9. India
  10. Argentina

(Based upon WIPO data for 2014).  Whenever you see a list of what others are doing, you need to do a reality check for your own particular circumstances.  Mom had a point when she asked: “If everyone else was jumping off a bridge, would you jump too?”

Here is the whole list

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Protecting Websites

The graphics on a web page can be protected by copyright.  If they are distinctive enough, they can also be protected as a trademark, and even registered.  However, a third alternative, design patent, which can protect such things as website backgrounds and other website features.  See, for example,  U.S. Patent No. D570,362 on the background image for a portion of a display screen:



Google obtained U.S. Patent No. D599,372 on its landing page: