By jim dossey patent attorney bs ms mba it is often difficult to distinguish between different types of intellectual property the chart below illustrates the key differences between patents copyrights trademarks and trade secrets. While copyright law is the most important intellectual property law for the internet you need to know enough about patent trademark and trade secret law to avoid infringing intellectual property rights owned by others and to be able to take advantage of the protection provided by these laws these three intellectual property laws are discussed in this chapter. The intellectual property in software can be protected three ways patents copyrights and trade secrets patents protect inventions that are useful nonobvious and novel and must be approved . Stay ahead with the worlds most comprehensive technology and business learning platform with safari you learn the way you learn best get unlimited access to videos live online training learning paths books tutorials and more. Trade secret protection of an invention in fact does not provide the exclusive right to exclude third parties from making commercial use of it only patents and utility models can provide this type of protection once the secret is made public anyone may have access to it and use it at will a trade secret is more difficult to enforce than a
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