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The Importance of Trademarking Your Band Name

Imagine brainstorming and coming up with an awesome name for your band. It might have taken a long time to come up with the name or it was a name that your band came up with over coffee. Regardless of how long it took, the name fits your band. The band plays several venues under the name and becomes known under that band name. Then one day you are searching the internet only to find someone else is already using that name. So it is back to the drawing board. You search and find the perfect name that is not being used by anyone else. Once again you play music under the new name only to find a few months later that another band has started using the name. Trade marking your band name is the only way to make sure it is protected.

Before picking a band name conduct an internet search to make sure the name is not already in use. After searching the web, search for the name or any association that might confuse it with another band at Trademark.gov. If the name is not there either then you can assume that it is not yet being used. This is the time to apply for a Trademark. Applying for the trademark does not ensure that it is not being used or that no one else has applied for the name but if it did not come up with an internet search or at Trademark.gov chances are it is not in use.

If you fail to trademark your name and decide to play shows using the name it is up for grabs. Another band can come along and trademark it before you leaving you with the job of finding another band name. If they beat you to applying for the trademark it is possible that the other band will be able to trademark your name. There are a lot of legalities involved, to avoid them trademark before you start playing shows and other bands hear your name.

It isn’t easy coming up with a band name that is not in use. Once you do come up with a name it is up for grabs until a trademark is purchased protecting your band name. Many bands have had to change their name because another band decided they liked it or simply because two bands came up with the same name around the same time. Whatever the reason as soon as you know the name is one that your band wishes to use, trademark your band's name so that it legally belongs to your band.

Picture by Flickr

 

Kim Miller

Kim Miller

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