Small business owners who plan to build websites or use social media to promote their goods and services may want to understand the concept of intellectual property rights to avoid any litigation that may occur during the process. The definition of intellectual property can vary depending on the type, including art, music and written property.
The World Trade Commission notes that intellectual property rights usually include the copyright itself and rights attached to that copyright, so taking steps to understand and differentiate between the two may help business owners protect themselves as they work to form their brands.
Photos and artwork
Business owners who want to build and maintain their own websites for the purpose of selling and promoting their goods may want to remain cautious about using photos or artwork that they did not create, as this usually violates intellectual copyright laws. Photos and artwork that carry trademarks do not fall under free use or public domain laws and adding such items to websites or advertisements may result in a lawsuit.
Intellectual property also protects the rights of those who produce music, including scores as well as songs. This includes the labor of broadcasting networks and those who own them, and adding any music to a website owned by another poses a risk of litigation by the owner. While music or a memorable jingle can increase business, creating an original score and words can help ensure a lack of legal issues when the site goes live.
Intellectual copyright laws also protect signs and symbols, whether printed or digital. Business owners should take care regarding originally while creating such items to avoid accusations of copyright infringement.