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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hey everybody, my name is J.D. Houvener. I’m your host of the Bold Today Show. This is where you, the inventor, entrepreneur, or business owner, get your daily inspiration to make the world a better place.

We’re at the end of our series on cannabis and marijuana, and I want to talk about the different aspects of copyright and trade secret, those the last two areas of IP we haven’t yet talked about in the cannabis industry.

With trade secrets, we’ve talked about this before on the show, but I want to lay out the big three elements that are true in every single state. You’ve got to have something that’s not known in the public, not readily ascertainable; it’s called the second element. You must be making efforts to keep the information secret, and the last element is that the information, that trade secret knowledge, has to be economically valuable. Those are the big three tenets in order to have a trade secret.

Certainly, within the cannabis world, there’s tons of great information, and it can range from anything from business processes or how you’re actually doing the growing, cutting, processing, trimming, and packaging of the product to something much more generic like a customer list, vendor lists, directions—certain information and processes for how your company does what it does.

The second thing I want to talk about today is copyright protection. As you may know, copyrights originate from the mind. These are creative works that are expressed through humans, and they’re as long as they’re captured right, fixed in the tangible means—recorded on a microphone, picked up on a cloud recording device, or put onto a record. These are creative works that are put out there by artists. So yes, definitely copyright is a big deal for those in the cannabis industry, those creating whether it be videos, photographs, images, songs. All of that is a part of what makes up a business’s brand and how you just sort of develop a theme to your customers.

So, any of those media, any of that creative publications that you have out there on your website and print media, all that is protectable and should be thought of as an intellectual property. Registration can be sought, it should be sought, especially for those works that are going to be sold. Something that’s put together in a portfolio, video, even an advertisement that’s gonna be licensed—that only has been protected, and it should be filed with the Library of Congress.

We’ve covered it all this week. We’ve touched on patent law, trade secret, trademark, copyright, and we’ve also touched a little bit on overall business strategy. Cannabis, as we know, is a major substance, and while that’s still federally controlled, more than half the states have now legalized it. So if you haven’t really thought about it yet, I encourage you to please think hard about how it’s gonna impact you and your business, even if it’s tangentially.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend ahead. I look forward to talking with you next week. I’m your host of the Bold Today’s Show, J.D. Houvener. I hope you’ll have a great day. Go big, go bold.

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at