Since launching FIA three years ago, we’ve witnessed firsthand how brands and designers will invest in marketing and communications, while devoting less attention to their companies’ business and legal needs. As we celebrate World Intellectual Property Day, now is a great time for designers and creative entrepreneurs to ensure they’re protecting their logos, designs and inventions — especially if there are counterfeits or copies spotted on online shopping sites or on social media.

In celebration of this year’s World IP Day theme around intellectual property and sports, here are brands at the intersection of fashion, innovation and sports that are promoting and protecting their IP.

Trademarks. In 1971, Carolyn Davidson designed the Nike Swoosh logo while a student at Portland State University. Since then, Nike’s famous Swoosh mark has been spotted on Olympic champions and through collaborations with fashion designers including Matthew Williams, Virgil Abloh and Rei Kawakubo.

Patents. LOOMIA, known for making soft-circuit systems across industries, has registered numerous patents to protect their innovations. LOOMIA specializes in producing the patented LOOMIA Electronic Layer (LEL), an e-textile designed to integrate into textile products that can be used for athletic wear and outdoor sports apparel.

Copyright. While there is currently no U.S. copyright law specifically for fashion designs, the 2017 U.S. Supreme Court decision involving cheerleader uniforms gives the fashion industry some hope. In Star Athletica, LLC. v. Varsity Brands, Inc., the Supreme Court held that two- or three- dimensional graphic designs on a useful article are eligible for copyright protection if it “would qualify as a protected pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work” — separate from the useful article.

For strategic business and policy guidance on protecting your designs and innovations, please contact the FIA team at info@fashinnovation.com.

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