The Difference Between Trademark, Patent and Copyright and The Importance Of Each

The Difference Between Trademark, Patent and Copyright and The Importance Of Each

Intellectual property rights are essential for protecting the creations of individuals and organizations. These rights provide legal protection for inventions, literary, and artistic works, and other forms of intellectual property. Intellectual property is protected by the law which enables people to earn recognition or credit for what they invent or create.

The importance of these rights lies in the fact that they enable creators to have exclusive ownership over their work, which helps to incentivize innovation and creativity and to enable them to reap commercial benefits. Without intellectual property rights, individuals would not have the incentive to invest their time and resources into creating new ideas or products.

Additionally, these rights ensure that creators are fairly compensated for their work, which is crucial in promoting economic growth and development. There are several areas of intellectual property including copyright, trademarks, patents, geographical indications, plant varieties, industrial designs and trade secrets. For this article, we shall be focusing on Trademarks, Patents and Copyright.


A trademark is a recognizable symbol, word, or phrase that distinguishes a particular product or service from others in the industry. Section 67 (the interpretation section) of the Trademarks Act defines trademarks as: A mark or Symbol used or proposed to be used in relation to goods for the purpose of indicating a connection in the course of trade between the goods and the proprietor/registered user of the mark.

A trademark is a sign capable of differentiating the goods or services produced by one company from those of other companies. It serves as an identifier of the source of goods or services and provides legal protection against infringement. A registered trademark gives exclusive rights to its owner to use it in connection with their business and prevents others from using similar marks that may cause confusion among consumers.

Upon registration, exclusive ownership of a trademark is conferred on the proprietor which enables the proprietor to enjoy full benefits and protection provided under the law. In Nigeria, the Trade Marks Act, Cap T 13, Laws of
the Federation of Nigeria 2004 and the Trademark Regulations 1990 govern the registration of trademarks.

By the provisions of the Act, a trademark must be registered in respect of particular goods or classes of goods/services.


Trademarks are a crucial aspect of any business, regardless of its size or industry. It is essential to have a trademark to protect one’s brand identity and reputation from infringement by competitors. The importance of trademarks lies in the fact that it distinguishes the products or services of one company from another, enabling consumers to identify and associate with them easily, as a trademark serves as a brand identity.

A trademark serves as an information source to customers to help pinpoint the origin of a product and brand. Trademarks are essential assets for businesses as they build brand recognition and loyalty, which ultimately leads to increased revenue.

Trademarks also provide legal protection against counterfeiting, piracy, and intellectual property theft, which can damage a company’s credibility and financial stability. Trademark registration protects the brand of your business against unwarranted imitation by third parties.

Legal actions may be initiated to stop third parties from infringing your trademark and obtain huge compensation for any infringement. Furthermore, trademarks can increase the value of a business by making it more attractive to potential investors or buyers. The process of registering a trademark involves thorough research and legal procedures, but it is crucial for protecting intellectual property rights and maintaining a competitive edge in the


A patent is a legal document that gives the inventor exclusive rights to prevent others from making, using, or selling their invention for a certain period.  A patent is a grant by a country to an inventor of an exclusive monopoly right to preclude another person from exploiting, making, using, importing, or selling invention his invention without his consent for a fixed period of twenty (20) years.

In Nigeria, the primary legislation that governs the grant of patents is the Patents and Designs Act. Requirements for Patentability. The five primary requirements for patentability are: patentable subject matter, utility, novelty, non-obviousness, and enablement. Patents can be granted for new machines, processes,  products, or compositions of matter that are useful, novel, and non-obvious.


Patents are vital in protecting the intellectual property rights of inventors and promoting innovation. They provide legal protection for ideas, processes, products, and designs that are novel, non-obvious, and useful. The purpose of a patent is to encourage innovation by rewarding inventors for their creativity and hard work.

Patents give inventors exclusive rights to their creations for a limited period, allowing them to profit from their inventions while preventing others from copying or exploiting them without permission. A patent gives you the right to stop others from copying, manufacturing, selling or importing your invention without your permission.

This encourages inventors to invest time and resources into developing new technologies and products that can benefit society. They provide protection to the inventor and allow them to profit from their invention without fear of competition.

In exchange for this protection, the inventor must publicly disclose their invention so that others can learn from it and build upon it in the future. Furthermore, patents promote competition by encouraging others to innovate around existing patents.


Copyright is a legal concept that protects the rights of creators and authors over their original works. It protects the work of authors, artists, songwriters, music publishers and composers, photographers and other creatives. It grants them exclusive control over the use, distribution, and reproduction of their creative works. These may include literary, artistic, musical, or scientific works.

The primary copyright law in Nigeria is the Copyright Act Cap C28 LFN 2004. Copyright laws aim to promote creativity by enabling creators to earn a living from their work while also protecting them from infringement and piracy. Additionally, copyright law encourages innovation by providing an incentive for creators to produce new and original works.

In today’s digital age, copyright laws are more important than ever in protecting intellectual property rights and ensuring fair compensation for creators.


Copyright is a legal right that protects the original works of authors, artists, and creators. It is essential to ensure that their intellectual property is not stolen or misused by others. Copyright laws provide protection for creative works such as music, films, books, and other literary works.

Without copyright protection, creators would not have control over their work and would not be able to profit from it. This would discourage creativity and innovation in society. Copyright also plays a crucial role in promoting education by providing access to information while protecting the rights of creators.

Therefore, copyright is vital in safeguarding the interests of creators while promoting innovation and creativity in society. Copyright is important as it helps to protect the value of authors, musicians, creators, academics, authors, songwriters, and novelists, by giving the originator of the work the ability to protect it from unlicensed or uncredited usage.

Copyright allows the originator or creator of the work to get paid. Copyright gives specific rights to commerce legal actions if third parties decide to use or sell your work without permission. Copyright also helps others promote the originators by giving them proper credit for their work.

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