A business’s reputation is one of the most important assets that it owns. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has recognized how important the reputation of a business is not only to the business but to the consumer. Obviously there are brands that should have a poor reputation because their product or service is of subpar quality. However, when a company has worked hard and earned the trust of the public it is imperative that they protect their image and brand.
An easy example to point out in this regard would be to compare the quality of a product that is manufactured and sold by a known retailer versus that of a knockoff of the same product. When someone sells a fake Rolex, they are using all of the goodwill, brand awareness, and status that Rolex has developed. Yet the quality of the watch is not going to live up to the standards that one would expect from a true Rolex that is built by the company. In this example, two parties are hurt by the fake product. The consumer who has relied on the reputation of Rolex is harmed by receiving a subpar quality product and Rolex’s valuable brand is tarnished. There have been several broadcasts on 60 Minutes, 20-20, and other prime time news organizations that have brought forth consumers who have unknowingly been taken advantage when they purchased a given product only to be delivered a knockoff.
As a business owner it is your obligation to protect your brand and reputation. The Trademark Lawyers of The Plus IP Firm have opened an office in Naples, Florida. Due to the fact that trademark and IP laws are so complex, our practice only involves intellectual property matters. We are available in Naples by consultation during normal business hours.