Presentation on theme: "Tradition innovation Online Branding Kate Legg Solicitor."— Presentation transcript:
tradition innovation Online Branding Kate Legg Solicitor
Key Areas Choosing a Brand Building a Website Getting the Domain Name Legal Compliance
What makes a good brand? Think of popular Online brands: Google Ebay Yahoo Bebo Facebook Made up words usually make better brands than descriptive words
Why are descriptive brands popular? Descriptive domains may increase the volume of traffic to the site
New or Existing Brand? Do you already have an established reputation/ goodwill in the brand? Are you targeting different markets? How will trading online impact on your existing distribution network?
Has anyone else beaten you to it? Consider searches: Companies House – Limited Company Names Internet – Domain Names UK Intellectual Property Office – Trade Marks
Domain Names: Pitfalls Genuine Concurrent Use – someone with a genuine business interest has registered first Cyber squatting: you can usually get the domain back – at a price Domain name front running Domaining as an investment – domain names are a valuable commodity
Avoid the Pitfalls by: Search before you invest in a brand Use reputable, secure services to conduct searches Make searches anonymous Register quickly after conducting the search Consider defensive registrations Register a trademark
How do Registered Trade Marks Help? Trade marks confer exclusivity Generally in a dispute involving a trade mark against a domain name, the trade mark will take precedence Easier to enforce rights in trade marks than to enforce unregistered rights
The Lowdown on Trade Marks
Decide what you want to register – text and/or logo; is colour important? Decide where you need protection – UK, EC or specific countries outside the UK UK registration typically takes 6 – 9 months File an application form Application will be reviewed by a trade mark examiner Opposition from existing trade mark owners will be invited Application will be published If no oppositions are raised, trade mark will be registered following expiry of the opposition period. Registration lasts for an initial 10 years, then renewable.
Building a Website: The Pitfalls Disputes with Website designers Intellectual Property issues (IPR) Avoid the pitfalls by: Choosing a reputable web designer Having an agreement in place Considering IPR in all content
Agreements With Web- designers Scope and specifications – is the website required to function in a particular way? Timetable – milestones and launch date Price – fixed fee or time and materials? Consider agreeing a cap if using time and materials Payment – up-front or on completion? Consider stage payments on reaching certain milestones Acceptance tests – on completion the site should perform to the agreed functionality Ownership of IPR Protection against IPR infringement Maintenance and support
Intellectual Property Content will be protected by copyright The first owner of the rights in the website will be the person who created it. Paying someone to build a site for you isn’t enough – get it in writing. Photographs and graphics will be protected by copyright
The Lowdown on Copyright
Copyright arises automatically Copyright protects rights in text, graphics, music, public performances A right to prevent copying, not an exclusive right to the idea Copying someone else’s work without their permission is copyright infringement Remedies can include damages, injunction and an order for delivery up of infringing items
Legal Compliance: The Pitfalls Failure to comply with E-commerce legislation Infringing rights under the Data Protection Act Accessibility under the Disability Discrimination Act Any industry specific requirements?
E-Commerce Online brochure or Online store? Legislation includes: –Distance Selling Regulations –E-Commerce Regulations –Unfair Contract Terms Act Obligation to provide information Terms and conditions of sale International issues: Jurisdiction
Data Protection Eight Data Protection Principles Applies to information relating to living, identifiable individuals First Principle: Information must be fairly and lawfully processed Seventh Principle: Data security Eighth Principle: Data Export
Disability Discrimination Websites must be accessible to all Is your website compatible with auxillary aids? Avoid users being timed out if they take longer to navigate the site as a result of a disability Guidelines available at
Pro-active Management: How to protect your website Regularly search the web Take action against infringers Diarise key dates Make new registrations as appropriate Train employees
Summary (1) Choose a brand carefully Check website development agreements and ensure rights in the site have been transferred to you Check the domain name is registered to you and consider defensive registrations Monitor the Web for others infringing your rights Don’t infringe other people’s rights Consider registering a Trade Mark