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    Wednesday, December 17, 2008

    Would you care if someone copied you?

    Clients always downplay their product or their mark. It's not patentable, I didn't invent the wheel, anybody could do it. A simple question changes the mind: "Would you care if someone copied you? --copied your GUI (graphical user interface), your software engine, your product name or your company name." If you would care, then it is worth protecting. Whether talking about infringement, counterfeiting, misappropriation, et al., the normal term is "copying". When phrased that way, most people do care if their work is copied. That's where IP audits and business plans come in. IP audits review the business and see what IP protection may be needed, and the current state of the IP protection, among other things. It includes a review of employment agreements, shareholder agreements, vendor agreements, products and product names, websites and web engines, processes and procedures. What is your IP, how is it protected, how much protection can you afford, and which IP is at the core of your businesses profit-making? Once the IP is identified and the state of protection determined, budgets can be set. Of course, none of this matters if you don't care if someone copies you.