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mTech mTech is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 106
Someone Is About to Steal My Idea!! "Facebook Dilemma"

It would seem to be a bit of a Facebook dilemma.
I was recently talking to a friend of mine about a new business venture I am looking to start and, a long story short, they have now started up different Facebook pages, twitter accounts etc. with the same name as the one I clearly identified I was looking to start my business under.

They have not registered the name under companies house and it would also seem that they have stolen my logo idea!

Am I legally obliged to register the company name and use their logo for my company as they have not yet taken the step to make the idea a legal entity?

What would you do in my situation?
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mTech mTech is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 106
Also, it would seem that they are not yet trading. I take it that would mean they have not got any protection for their IP...?
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jay-dogg88 jay-dogg88 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1
not the best website but works http://www.myfreecopyright.com/ you can copyright the domain and also any images you use.
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beerbongbros beerbongbros is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 4
First of all they sound like a great friend.

Personally I would let them take the name idea and logo unless of course you own the registered domain in which case you can always create a similar FB and Twitter URL. Same with if you have the original Logo or an email or message with the ideas with dates on.

If all else fails, keep with the same concept but create a different business name. Then be more determined to beat them at their own game.
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lordlancaster's Avatar lordlancaster lordlancaster is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Gateshead
Posts: 1,348
Yup, they don't sound like a very good friend! Are they still one?

Thankfully, this type of thing is quite rare but it's obviously very upsetting and annoying to have someone do this to you.

My first question is, have you confronted them about this? What are their motives and is there a way around it? It's great that other people are excited about your idea and it COULD be that they are just super-keen to get involved. Could it just be a misunderstanding and is there a way you can still work together on the business, having them help you out with the Facebook and Twitter?

If there's no way you can imagine working together (or you simpy don't want to), how much do you really love that business name? Is it absolutely essential to what you ware doing or can you think of a different/better one?
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danaelemara danaelemara is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: London
Posts: 7
Hi there, I have been through this several times with my business. Attending a free IP talk at The British Library really cleared some things up.

Basically registering a company under companies house or purchasing a URL is a pretty weak way to protect yourself. If you think about it you can register a company under any name and then use a different name to trade with, it's the trading name that the customers will see.

What you need to protect yourself is to trademark your name and logo which you do through this site http://www.ipo.gov.uk/. Before you do that you must check that no one else has already trademarked that name (for a similar product) which you can also find publicly on the site. It costs £200 or so but it is vital if you care about a name. If you have the trademark for a name and you can prove you had the idea before them, then they almost have no leg to stand on.

I have been through this and I'm so happy I invested in trademarking my name in the early days as without that I may have had to lose the name I love. When you have a good idea there will always be people trying to steal it, it's horrible! Hope this helps a bit..
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