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Questions & Answers

Posted by Robert Conte on 2014-03-16 23:02:04
Title: How do I safely launch a new website and App when my lawyer doesn't think I can patent my website id...
Category: Leadership

How do I safely launch a new website and App when my lawyer doesn't think I can patent my website idea?

Answer:

Ronan Levy
2014-03-21 18:06:18

Robert - beyond patents, the law provides one or two other well-known forms of monopoly in connection with the operation of a business: trademarks and, to a lesser extent, copyrights. Trademarks can protect your branding and logos, and copyright can protect any content you produce and, importantly for websites and apps, the code and algorithms used to operate your platform. 

That said, this is less of a legal question and more of a business question. Many companies exist without legal monopolies that patents provide. As I’m sure you know, strategic and competitive advantages can come from branding, proprietary information, first mover advantage, customer service, market execution etc. These can be defensible without any formal legal protection. For instance, while I can’t say with any authority, I’m quite sure that both Twitter and Facebook launched without any patents and still succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest expectation. If you have a good idea, that delivers value and offers real competitive advantages, the lack of patentability should not hold you back. 

Happy to discuss further if you wish. 

Ronan Levy, Founder, Mayfair Seven Legal Concierge Services


Robert Conte
2014-03-25 22:57:40
Followup question:
Thanks Ronan. The problem is as we see on Dragons Den and in Life if You don't have a patent or patent pending the Entrepreneur is usually asked to get one or the business is looked at differently (not as interesting). As We see company's like google are buying up patents....

Ryan Mulligan
2014-04-19 18:11:37
Followup question:
How important is it to trademark the name and logo of your business and should that be done before you start discussing and displaying your brand to people online? Also, can you trademark images such as four leaf clovers etc?