Protecting Your Band Name as a Trademark

                                The selection of a band name creates a host of legal issues. Obviously, this brief article cannot touch on every legal and intellectual property issue that relates to a band name. Instead, this article is primarily focused on trademark law. The most vital and valuable trademarks in the music business are the names of bands and individual performers. Band names serve the important function of identifying the artist's goods and services. First, you should know that you cannot copyright the name of a band. Copyright law does not protect names, titles, slogans, or short phrases. Copyright protection, however, may be available for a band's logo design or artwork if it contains sufficient authorship. Also, in some circumstances, a band's logo may be protected as a trademark. A trademark is simply a word, phrase, sound, or symbol that represents the commercial reputation and identity of a product or service in the marketplace. For example, when you see the band name "The Rolling Stones," you identify that name with Mick, Keith, Ronnie, Charlie and the other musicians who have played in that band. Likewise, when you…

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