Other legal means to protect original work

Listen to Audio Lesson: Other legal means to protect original work

Copyright is not the only means available to protect original creations which have economic value for your profession, company or business: 


protects inventions if they fulfill specified legal requirements. While patents gives you a monopoly over the technical implementation of an idea or concept underlying the invention, copyright only protects the literary or artistic (and not functional) expression of an idea. 


May protect words, phrases, slogans, logos, or other symbols that your company uses to identify its goods or services. Trademark law is often used with copyright law to protect advertising material from being copied. The form, design or packaging of a given product may also be considered a distinctive feature of the product and may be protectable as a three-dimensional trademark. 

Industrial Design

The aesthetic aspects or outward appearance of your products can be protected as an industrial design. Thus, the shape of a lamp; the pattern, lines, and colors of a textile; the configuration of a furniture; the novel shape of a packaging, etc. may be registered as industrial designs, provided the legal requirements are fulfilled. 

Trade Secret

Valuable confidential business information, such as technical drawings, technical manuals, commercial or financial information, may be protected both as a trade secret and under copyright law. Any confidential business information which provides your enterprise with a competitive advantage may be protected by contract or by trade secret law. Such information may include a sales method, a distribution method, consumer profiles, advertising strategies, lists of key suppliers and clients, details of manufacturing processes, a marketing plan, etc. However, trade secrets are only protected if your company has taken “reasonable steps” to keep the information confidential. 

Unfair Competition Claim

Many Countries have unfair competition laws that allow you to act against unfair business behavior of competitors. You can bring an action against unfair and misleading marketing or promotional methods. Protection under unfair competition rules may grant protection against copying of products including software.