IP in The Social Network

From Anne H. Chasser, co-author of Brand Rewired: Connecting Branding, Creativity, and Intellectual Property Strategy:

Anne-chasser Social Networking is here to stay. The movie, The Social Network, is sure to be an Oscar favorite as it chronicles Mark Zuckerberg’s journey, relationships, connections, opportunities and the highs and lows of starting Facebook with fellow Harvard classmates. Throughout the movie, the discussion of intellectual property (IP) - who owns an idea – takes center stage.

In Brand Rewired, Jennifer Wolfe and I interviewed some of the world’s leading thought leaders in innovation, branding and intellectual property from companies such as Proctor & Gamble, Kodak and Yahoo!  We found that companies and especially start-ups that take a strategic pause during the creative process to design in intellectual property protection can create long term value and a greater return on investment.  Thinking about it early can save the company a lot of money and produce better results. 

Intellectual property protection of an idea – Facebook, a social networking site for Friends – can be protected and can keep others from stealing your idea, your computer algorithm, the name of your company, your logo.  This is achieved by filing and registering patents, trademarks and copyrights.

Did you know that the Nike swoosh, the blue box from Tiffany, the Coca-Cola bottle design, and the sound of the unique tones for Intel are all registered trademarks?  No one else can use these without permission from the owners.  These iconic brands have endured because companies took the time to protect unique features of their products and services.  The consumer knows that these brands stand for quality and dependability.

A company’s intellectual property is its most valuable asset.  The question looming in the movie The Social Network is “who” owned the idea.  Protecting it earlier in the process might have saved Mark Zuckerberg a lot of money and a lot of friends!


Thank you very much, Anne Chasser, for your guest post for Handshake 2.0.  For more information on brand and intellectual property, readers are invited to visit the Brand Rewired site.

Anne H. Chasser's bio from the Brand Rewired site:

Anne H. Chasser was named “One of the 50 most influential people in the intellectual property world,” by Managing Intellectual Property magazine,  served as Commissioner of Trademarks for the United States Patent & Trademark Office and President of the International Trademark Association. As Associate Vice President for Intellectual Property at the University of Cincinnati and Director of Trademarks and Licensing at The Ohio State University, she has achieved top-level executive experience in both government and higher education administration. Chasser is widely recognized as a visionary thought leader in intellectual property.

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  1. Anne has always been a leader and innovator – once again she is the authority!

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