Many people get confused with the various designations that are used to protect Intellectual Property. Most commonly confused are the ©,™ and ®. The Trademark Access Trademark Attorney in San Diego helps clear up the confusion.
The Circle C or © symbol is reserved for copyrighted materials, such as blogs, books, or paintings unless they are sound recordings. Sound recordings should use a Circle P. The United States does not require you use the Circle C symbol for protection. However, using the Circle C may deter some people from infringement.
The Circle R or ® Symbol is for trademarks that have received a trademark registration certificate from the USPTO. Using the Circle R before you have the certificate could expose your company to expensive litigation.
The Common law trademark symbol or ™ is used for trademarks that were acquired by use and not registered with the USPTO. Other people will use the ™ symbol when they are waiting for a certificate of registration from the USPTO.