A hidden fear usually works at the back of the mind of those who introduce a new idea or product in the market "what if this idea is stolen by someone?" Even in case of golf ideas and products, claiming somebody else's idea as own is not a new issue. Therefore, before selling any golf product or idea it is important to protect your invention.
Listed below are five ways to protect your golf idea:
1. The Inventor's Notebook - When a new product idea comes to mind, the next question that arises is how to protect that idea from thieves and plagiarists. Keeping an inventor's notebook is a good solution as it helps to organize all ideas and information about the invention. In fact, if a dispute arises in the future, this notebook can give legal protection to a product inventor. A notebook having bound pages, not the loose-leaf binders, should be used for this purpose. Electronic recording devices are not advisable for using as an inventor's notebook as they are not considered reliable evidence since they can be easily manipulated.
2. Trademarks - A golf concept or idea can be protected from idea stealers by registering it for a trademark. This applies to golf products and ideas that may or may not have a patent. Trademarks have a certain limit in the protection of an idea. They can't stop someone from manufacturing the same products under a different name or mark, they only protect the mark under which a product is sold. Golf industry advisors suggest that golf product inventors, manufacturers or sellers should register their trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO). Using the superscript "TM" after a product name or logo gives a limited trademark protection to the name or the logo.
3. Legal Documentation of Intellectual Property - All entrepreneurs, whether in golf or any other field, thoroughly realize the value of an original product idea, logo, brand name, etc. Legally documenting intellectual property helps inventors to protect their ideas and inventions from being misused by unscrupulous people or to be claimed as their own for their personal benefits. This can be done by filling out a copyright application and is discussed later. The inventor or the creator of a product can also legally document the intellectual property by sending the document to themselves through registered mail; but don't open it.
4. Patent - Inventors of products and concepts 'may' want to consider a patent to protect them when prior to licensing or selling their concepts or golf prototype. According to the Doctrine of Equivalents, patent protection is not limited to the literal elements asserted by a patent. Reasonable equivalents of the listed elements also come under patent protection.
5. Copyright - Copyright laws protect a product name or a copy used for selling a product from being duplicated by competitors or any other person or company for personal profit. The other way round, while marketing or licensing a golf idea or product, make a thorough research about the market so as to avoid intentional or unintentional copying of product name, content, etc. Inexpensive copyright services are available online and can ensure it is done right.
In some cases where an entrepreneur needs to protect the trade secrets, simple Non Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) can help in protection against copying of ideas or products. Locate a group of golf industry professionals to help golf product inventors and entrepreneurs with the protection of golf ideas and products - since both you and they will want to ensure the idea is sound, solid and protected before moving ahead with the launching of a new golf product.
Many golf products are invented by either genius engineering or a simple concept and process. If you have an idea that pertains to the golf industry, receive a Free Inventors Guide to learn more about protecting your idea and then how to market it. Visit us at http://www.FairwaysInternational.com.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Diane_Hofflander