Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Patents is a question and answer site for people interested in improving and participating in the patent system. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Let's say I have an idea about tape. This tape has always had the capability to be sold in color, but never into different shapes. It has always been sold in a straight line. I want to make them in many different shapes and sizes, but that could be as many as 50 different designs. Does this mean I would have to get individual design patents on each and every one I created or could I get some sort of protection that could cover all of them being sold together? I'm very confused as to what option to shoot towards.

share|improve this question
    
Could you rephrase the question to be more clear what you want to protect? I do not understand what kind of tape you are referring to, but that does not seem important to the question. Is it about a set of related designs, or about a product available with multiple independent designs, more than currently available from others? –  Volker Siegel Mar 28 at 4:34
    
Yes, i'm trying to find out if I can protect my designs based on the fact that if i'm the only company selling the product in a format which is shaping the type of product, if I can exclude others from copying the way I sell my idea once it is out in the market so nobody copies me and I prevent competition. –  Matt Mar 29 at 8:02
    
Without having a clear idea of what kind of product, and what kind of design/format/shape we're talking about, I think it depends mostly on how unique/special/unusual it is. –  Volker Siegel Mar 29 at 8:47

2 Answers 2

Without having a clear idea of what kind of product, and what kind of design/format/shape we're talking about, I think it depends on two things:

Whether there is a way of protection that is applicable for your case; That may be patents, but also something like protection of a brand, or a design (as in a logo).

Then, you need to find out whether the change you make from the common existing product is relevant enough for the kind of protection to apply.

After clarifying this, there is a lot more to do of course; Like deciding in which areas of the planetyou like to protect it, and doing the above again for each country (or possibly larger area, eg EU).

share|improve this answer

It is a little unclear just what your tape does. However, if it has some pattern then that could be copyrighted. You may also be able to trademark the design. You could go down those paths even if you are planning to go forward with patent. Note copyrights and trademarks are cheap and the instructions are easy for anyone to follow. Don't pay someone more than $100 to copyright your stuff unless that fee is also including some patent research/consultation.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.