What is a trademark?

A trademark is a word, a symbol, a design (or a combination of these features), used to distinguish the wares or services of one person or organization from those of others in the marketplace. Trademarks come to represent not only actual wares and services, but the reputation of the producer. As such, they are considered valuable intellectual property. A registered trademark can be protected through legal proceedings from misuse and imitation.

A trademark does not have to stop at sheer words. Today, it is common for a trademark to involve an entire phrase, such as the Capital One Company's trademark: What's in your wallet?

Trademarks can be very valuable assets since they can come to signify in the mind of the public a certain standard of quality and excellence that will be relied upon by them in the purchase decision. For example, a grocery shopper may automatically reach for a product bearing the Coca Cola label because that trademark has earned the reputation of representing products of 1st class quality.

Using the ™ and © symbols:

You can use the ™ symbol at any time, even if you have not applied for its registration. It's wise to do so, since it gives notice to the reader that you are claiming trademark rights to it.

You can only use the ® symbol once your trademark is actually registered with the Trademarks Office in Ottawa/Hull.

These are the French equivalents for the ™ symbol, and the ® symbol:

  1. The ™ symbol in French is mc which stands for "marque de commerce"
  2. The ® symbol in French is md which stands for "marque déposée"

Registration of your trademark gives you the exclusive right to use the mark across Canada for 15 years, renewable every 15 years thereafter.

What is "copyright"?

The right granted to the owner of the copyright in a work is the sole right to produce or reproduce the work or any substantial part of it in any material form. Copyright in a work expires 50 years after the author's death. Once it expires, the work falls into the "public domain," at which time it can be used without consent.

Copyright exists in any original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work, from the moment the work is created. It is also applicable to any on-line (internet), multimedia (CD, DVD or internet-based) or software (installed from CD, DVD or via the Internet) and is represented by the © symbol. No portion of copyrighted material may be used without the express written consent of the owner of the work.

The HomeLife wordmark and logo are Registered Trademarks licensed to HomeLife Real Estate Services and used with express permission.

The phrase Higher Standards Agents… Higher Results!™ is a trademark licensed to HomeLife Real Estate Services and used with express permission.

The content contained within this site is copyrighted and used with the express permission of HomeLife Real Estate Services.

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