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IP 101 > Trademark - Pg. 147

A Primer on Intellectual Property 147 · It provides inexpensive protection. · Software can be registered with trade secret portions blocked out to maintain confidentiality. Weaknesses of the copyright include: · Copyrights do not protect ideas, concepts, or methods, which are often key to software's value. · In most cases, copyrights only protect literal copying, enabling competitors to clone with impun- ity. What Assets can a Copyright Protect? Copyrights protect a broad array of developer assets, anything that can be fixed in a tangible medium (including computer media), covering everything from source, object, and machine code to auto- mated databases (using some element of selection or arrangement of data to artwork to design docs, budgets, and business plans, and in some instances a program's structure, sequence, and organization and certain elements of the user interface. Trademark At one of the scariest meetings I've ever attended, a (Prada®-clad) advertising guru leaned back in his (Aeron®) chair and decreed that a brand was "a set of characteristics united by a badge of reassurance." At first, this struck me as hilarious, but it sums up the reason that companies pour millions into their brands: to make a consumer feel safe purchasing the item, a feeling sometimes referred to as "goodwill" and tabulated on a balance sheet. Note NOTE