Every now and then, a question comes our way that we feel may be worth relaying to the rest of you guys along with our response. Recently the Myows team was asked: “Can I protect my Payoff line on Myows?”. The short answer is, “for sure you can” but the real answer is a little more complex…


For sure, you can upload a payoff line to Myows and that will assist you in protecting your copyright! Note, however, that for the purposes of trading, you’ll ultimately need to do a proper legal search and register the line as a TradeMark – this gives you the exclusive right to trade with this line as part of your identity.

This makes more sense also because in order for you to have copyright in something – you need to prove that it is an Original Work (OW) and a court is not likely to take this claim seriously on such a typically short line of text.

By way of example “Just do It” has been trademarked by Nike so nobody else can trade with this line. However they would struggle to claim ownership of the line as far as copyright is concerned as the line no doubt appears in millions of other contexts (novels plays etc.). It is a TM but not an Original Work.

Only problem is that this protection is territorial and costs a lot more.

Our (non-legal non-binding but fairly smart) response is this:

Upload your payoff line to Myows along with supporting images of the payoff line in use (signage, letterheads, printed business cards, email screenshots, packaging… you get the picture). If – over time – your business grows or you find the payoff line is really working for you, register it in your own country and then any other country or territory in which the value of owning the right to use it in your industry or trade outweighs the legal costs.