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Copyright/Patent a business plan/idea?

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Oct 4, 2007
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I have a great idea for a business. I have 5 years work experience on cruise ships and this idea, if proved successful could be rolled out to every ship on every cruise line.
The problem is, it is so simple and requires very little capital that I am a little worried that it may be easily copied.
What are my options in term of protecting my idea?
 

ForexGuides

Banned
May 5, 2009
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United States
I am currently working on a new business project that uses the graphic/intellectual property of other companies, such as logos and color schemes, and creating a product with them. It is not a matter of a taking a logo or image and parodying it; I would use the graphics in connection with my own design layouts. Unfortunately I do not want to divulge too much information since it is a unique idea that is yet to be discovered. That said I would like to protect myself from having someone steal the idea before I build a business off of it.
Am I able to copyright or patent my design/idea so no one else can create it? As mentioned before, I would license the intellectual property of other companies to use with my designs to create a product. I do have a prototype that I can submit and I also know someone who has a technology I can use to customize my product quickly and efficiently.
Sorry for being vague; I appreciate your help.
 

fanocks2003

Banned
Mar 31, 2008
1,319
177
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Sweden
I have a great idea for a business. I have 5 years work experience on cruise ships and this idea, if proved successful could be rolled out to every ship on every cruise line.
The problem is, it is so simple and requires very little capital that I am a little worried that it may be easily copied.
What are my options in term of protecting my idea?

If it is a technical solution then a patent can be issued.
If it is just an idea without a technical solution, then trademarking is the way to go.
 

jportz

New Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Oct 27, 2008
53
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Australia
Fanocks is correct.. if your idea is a tangible invention (ie new cruise ship safety device) patent is the way to go.

A business can register a trademark typically associated with a name, word, logo or symbol, usually to establish a brand or reputation for quality.

If your idea is simply a "business idea" (ie a system for people to book cruise tickets or activities on the cruise etc) then you cannot really expect to protect it.

The real question is if this is a simple idea that requires little capital why not just beat any competition to it and start now? As almost all on this forum will tell you success is: 1% idea, 99% execution.
 

fanocks2003

Banned
Mar 31, 2008
1,319
177
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Sweden
The trademark will protect a word or symbol (like the business or product name or mark, if unique and/or recognizable), but will not protect the *idea*.

Btw, there is nothing that will protect just an *idea*...not even a patent! A patent is used to protect an invention (such as a product or process), not an idea...

Haven't said that.
 

terrycan

New Contributor
Apr 6, 2009
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North Bend WA
Dear Non US Investor,

You don't provide enough information to give a concrete answer.

If you are selling hardware a patent is an option.

You may be best served filing a provisional patent and go directly into production.

If you are selling product within a year file for a utility patent.

Massive Success to you!
 

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