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Your Intellectual Property Score Is 101?
Your answers suggest that your business is an international business without any customers in the US at this time. This means that some of the iPscaling training won't apply to you. However, the "Concertina" principle training does apply wherever your business is located. Also, iPmasterclass all access pass, live online training and one-on-one coaching calls should help you answer important questions about your intangibles. If you need this type of support, please click the Enroll Now button below to sign up for the iPmasterclass all access pass. Important training about the Concertina principle continues below. This will never be offered at this price again!
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The Concertina® Principle
Avoid wasting time and money trying to protect the wrong iP and quickly and efficiently protect the right iP. Most attorneys you’ll meet either don’t know the difference or won’t take the time to help you find out which is which. That’s where the Concertina® principle comes in.
The entire point of this Concertina® training is to help you put up a quick and inexpensive barrier around your most important intangibles. First you identify your company’s high ground. Take a few minutes and write down what your advantage is. Your most valuable intangible assets are your “high ground” or key terrain. Following from this metaphor, a business owner should occupy the “high ground”, because it provides a significant advantage over a competitor.
You should identify what your iP “high ground” is and occupy it by registering intellectual property, providing exclusivity, which keeps others from occupying it.
A quick and easy barrier, like concertina wire, can be just the thing. Concertina wire is wire with razor sharp barbs designed to snag clothers and coiled up and is comparatively easily deployed around a unit’s perimeter. It doesn’t stop penetration of the perimeter but it doesn’t have to. Merely slowing foes has proven effective enough for smaller occupying forces to repulse most attacks by significantly larger opposing forces if used properly. A hundred years of warfare proves it.
Registering intellectual property is a quick and easy legal barrier that prevents someone from unfairly trying to occupy the same intangible property space as your company.
For example, if you’re protecting your brand, registering your trademarks is a quick and easy barrier to trademark infringement. Registering a federal trademark gives you certain additional benefits. It gives a presumption of exclusive use of the mark from the date of filing your initial application for registration of your mark. This is called a presumption of ownership, which gives your business the right to exclude others, everywhere in the US, even if you aren’t using the mark everywhere in the US yet. You have to be using the mark in at least two states or in another country and a single state, which might include selling goods marked with your trademark or offering services using your service mark.
In addition, like concertina wire making it easier to defend your position from an attack, a trademark can make it much easier for you to defend your brand. Concertina wire clearly defines your position's perimeter and a buffer zone surrounding your perimeter. A registered U.S. trademark excludes anyone in the U.S. from using any mark likely to cause confusion in consumers of your registered goods or services. That creates a buffer zone around your brand.
But that’s not all.
In studying military tactics, a barrier like concertina wire is only effective if it is under observation for any intrusion.
Likewise intellectual property is only effective if the owner sets up an alert or watch service to detect any misuse. In the trademark example, that might mean setting up a free google alert and watching for marks published by the trademark office or paying for a third party watch service like those offered by Thomson Compumark and many competing services. Some cost less than $100 a year to alert you about a problem.
When concertina wire is strung around a position and watched, then you need to be ready to take action if your watch observes a breach of your perimeter. Sticking with the registered U.S. trademark example, action doesn’t require you to immediately start a war by suing a potential infringer. Combining concertina wire with a warning can deter an attack or require a foe to try to use indirect fire to dislodge you from your high ground. In wartime, a warning might be popping a flare at night over your perimeter or dropping an explosive mortar round outside your perimeter.
In implementing the Concertina principle, a warning might be filing a takedown notice with the alleged infringer’s ISP or sending a cease and desist letter warning the alleged infringer of its infringing acts. In the U.S. the Digital Millennium Copyright Act or DMCA gives a safe harbor to internet service providers and social media sites that voluntarily have a copyright takedown policy that meets the requirements of the DMCA.
In practice, this means that many internet service providers and social media sites have policies not only for copyright takedown notices, taking down an alleged infringing site in a few days after a notice is received, but also for other types of intellectual property, including trademarks.
Now, you have to be careful with warning an alleged infringer. In wartime, a warning like a flare or mortar round might be followed by a barrage of artillery on your position. So, you need to be ready to survive any response. You need to be dug in. Intellectual property is similar, sticking with the trademark example, you need to make sure that you are using your mark properly, continuously and consistently. If your mark is very distinctive in the first place, then it is “dug in” and will be harder to cancel and easier to defend. Don’t warn your competitor unless you're dug in and ready for anything.
One benefit of registration is the ability to seek attorneys’ fees if you are successful in litigation, if it should come to that. That's hugely beneficial in copyright and trademark lawsuits.
Your proper use and marking of your registered U.S. trademark is part of digging in. It should make you eligible for attorney’s fees if a competitor intentionally misuses or willfully infringes your registered U.S. mark, especially if you send cease and desist letters warning the alleged infringer of your registration.
Being prepared or dug in actually makes it less likely that a competitor will continue the infringing acts after being warned of your intention to defend your mark from infringement. It makes it less likely that you will have to resort to a costly lawsuit. One alternative is to file takedown notices with Internet services providers and social media sites, at least eliminating the online misuse of your marks. You can send a cease and desist letter.
You can sue, if no other alternative is left. And you can win, even against a much larger competitor, because you have strung your concertina wire by registering your mark and have dug into your position.
I know this is a lot to absorb in a short period of time, and this explanation has gone on longer than it should.
The point is, once you understand the Concertina principle, intellectual property becomes easier to manage. By visualizing your intellectual property or “IP” as the way that you defend your valuable intangible property or “iP”, your company's key terrain, decisions become easier. Of course, you are always going to string at least one strand of concertina wire, as soon as you can, around your most valuable high places… your iP with the most value. Then, you will string additional strands.
And this applies to you whether you are selling in the U.S. or not, offering local, regional, national or international goods or services, have been in business for year or are just starting out. In this age of innovation, your iP has great value. It’s likely to make up more than 80% of the value of your business, if managed properly. It’s your key terrain, and you’ll need it just to survive.
The Concertina principle metaphor works equally well for copyright registrations, which give the owner the right to seek attorneys’ fees, statutory damages and a presumption of ownership. It works for trade secrets for your know-how and , which if protected properly gives you the right to defend against misappropriation anywhere in the U.S. through the U.S. district courts. It works for patents, too, but filing and protecting your inventions using patents is a little more like building the Maginot line (French defensive works prior to WW2) than stringing concertina wire and digging in. Few of you need patents and fewer still will need them right away. This knowledge, along, can save you tens of thousands when every penny counts, while scaling your business.
Don't Worry About Your iP. Do Something About It!
Intellectual Property becomes confusing and difficult to manage, only because its purpose has been explained poorly. Over two decades helping business owners, I've found the greatest frustration is from not knowing how IP adds value to a business.
That's because IP doesn't add value to a business. Intangible assets add value. But has anyone made it clear to you, before now, what the difference is between "intangible property" and "intellectual property"?
And why is it so important to know the difference?
Intellectual Property is generally considered an expense on your profit and loss statement or PNL. And most small business owners leave it there.
The purpose of intellectual property is to protect the value of intangibles, what I refer to as intangible property or "iP". It's this iP that builds business value.
Your iP should be on your balance sheet. It adds to the equity in your business, something that helps when seeking investment and securing loans. For innovative and creative businesses, iP accounts for much of the equity in a business.
In fact, intangibles account for more than 80% of the value of companies listed on the S&P 500. Ignoring more than four fifths of your company's value shouldn't be an option.
But intellectual property protection of intangibles has become increasingly expensive. It's considered a complex and quickly changing area of law that most attorneys don't fully understand.
There are only 140 board certified intellectual property attorneys in my state, Florida. There are more than a million businesses in Florida. I estimate 500,000 of those need some type of help with intellectual property, and that adds up to more than 3000 companies per attorney, which is more than any attorney can manage one-on-one. So, many businesses in Florida are going without help from Florida board certified IP lawyers.
It's probably much the same outside of my state, wherever the pace of innovation and growth of new businesses outpace the supply of qualified IP counsel. Maybe that's why, so often, I've found business owners investing in the wrong intellectual property.
With the cost of intellectual property legal services increasing by double digits, investing in the wrong IP is a costly exercise, costing tens of thousands for little or no return on investment. The cost of protecting iP sometimes exceeds the value of the iP being protected. This is frustrating for business owners like you.
However, it becomes more than frustrating when someone infringes, misappropriates or otherwise impairs the value of your company's intangibles, only to find that your company doesn't have the right intellectual property protection in place to stop it.
Or worse... when your company is threatened with a lawsuit for infringing someone else's intellectual property, which could cost hundreds of thousands with nothing at all to show for it.
iPmasterclass Is the Best Way To Manage Your iP, Without Spending Tens of Thousands on Lawyers!
iPscaling is the best way to implement the "Concertina" principle in your business, by taking quick, efficient steps that any business owner can put in place to protect and scale the value of its most valuable iP! Let my two decades of experience help you quickly and sustainably 5X business value.
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Here’s What You Get!
You're just seconds away from instant access to the training that you need and much more! I'll take you step by step through the process of implementing my "Concertina" principle in your business. You'll focus first on the iP that's most valuable in your business. You'll build a sustainable hedge of protection around your iP today!
5X Business Value
Scale the value of your business by focusing your efforts on building the right type of iP for you, your customers, and your business.
Protect Your iP
By implementing the "Concertina" principle in your business, you'll quickly and efficiently build a hedge of protection around your most valuable iP.
iPmasterclass all access pass
You get instant access to all of the iPscaling training, which might help you with figuring out how to use intellectual property in your country. Plus, you'll be able to register for live video hot seats to get questions to your most important questions, which are held twenty times per year, nearly every other week. And you'll get access to me, Chris Paradies, for six one-on-one coaching sessions by video each year, automatically included in your annual membership.
Trademarks: how to protect your brands
Implement the Concertina principle by protecting your brands using trademarks, setting up an alert, conducting trademark searches, and taking action when your marks are infringed, diluted or tarnished.
Copyrights: how to protect your creative works
Protect your copyrightable works by registering your copyrights, setting up a watch, and taking action when your copyrights are infringed.
Trade Secrets: how to protect your know-how
Learn how to implement a trade secret plan, create a trade secret disclosure document, and take reasonable measures to prevent public disclosure of your marks. Create agreements useful for keeping your know-how secret.
Patents: how to protect your inventions
Have inventions that can't be protected using trade secret law in your country? Learn how to create an invention disclosure, conduct a patentability search, determine if an invention is patentable, and create an assignment and obligation of assignment documents.
About Your Instructor,
Chris Paradies is a USPTO registered patent attorney and Florida Bar certified intellectual property attorney, the founder of Paradies® law, a boutique intellectual property law firm, and is the CEO or Paradies iP solutions, providing intellectual property training for busy business owners.
Chris has created a cost-effective way for creative and innovative business owners to 5X business value in his iPscaling® training and the own protect grow® process. Paradies iP’s “Concertina” principle finally makes intellectual property protection understandable and manageable for business owners. Over the past two decades, Chris has served hundreds of business owners.
Chris is married to Aleksandra, and they have two sons.
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