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I have few concepts of logos for a website. How do I know a specific concept that is finalized, is already used by some other website or not?

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    Not a full answer, but tineye.com might find logos similar to yours.
    – artlung
    Jul 19, 2010 at 22:27
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    If the logo is trademarked, you can do a trademark search (for US trademarks): uspto.gov/products/library/ptdl/services/tmsearch.jsp : If your mark incorporates a design or logo you must search for trademarks that might be confusingly similar. Use the index in the back of the Design Code Manual to locate the appropriate six-digit code for each design element in your mark. For example, a logo depicting an eagle would be coded 03.15.01. Each element in a logo is assigned a design code. Carefully review the guidelines for each category.
    – artlung
    Jul 20, 2010 at 0:42
  • @artlung, I think that's the closet approach that you have suggested. As a test, I tried to upload Google logo & the site did show me several Google logos indicating that the logo exists. Now I took the logo of this website (webmasters.stackexchange.com) & tested it. There were no results to be found. So this means that the website was unable to find the match, although it existed. So under this situation, I think the chances of finding out if the logo exists is just 50-50 or maybe even less. What do you say?
    – Devner
    Jul 20, 2010 at 14:48
  • @Devner, I agree, there's not a perfect mechanism to find out if a logo exists. I'm comfortable adding comments here, but not adding an answer per se. I'm hoping you find a way that is useful.
    – artlung
    Jul 20, 2010 at 14:53
  • @JasonBirch, that is one good resource that you have mentioned. I am still in the process of testing the website. Have you ever used it yourself? If yes, any helpful results that you might want to share? Thank you.
    – Devner
    Jul 20, 2010 at 14:54

2 Answers 2

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In order to avoid trademark violations, there is no way around involving a lawyer. They can assist you in doing a search. Even then, there could be challenges. In the US, at least, a logo does not have to be registered to enjoy trademark protection. Prior evidence of trade using that mark (or one sufficiently similar under a "reasonable person" test) in a similar area of trade constitutes precedence. Defending and losing a trademark battle can be expensive due to costs of implementing changes and the possibility of penalties, not to mention legal fees. I am not a lawyer, so this is just a rough approximation.

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  • Thank you for the reply. I understand that. But even a lawyer can do only so much. There may be more than a billion websites out there & more than a million unique logos (at least I hope). So what are the chances that a lawyer can really search a million logos(at the very least) & come up with accurate findings? Even a lawyer will have no option other than to search. So why don't we do the 'search' ourselves? Just a thought.
    – Devner
    Jul 20, 2010 at 14:51
  • @Devner: It's called "due dilligence" and it spreads the blame, er, risk. Jul 20, 2010 at 18:20
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I use reverse image search on Google. It has always worked for me.

But the significant disadvantage is that you should get a coarse "keymage" (key-image) ready for searching.

All the best searching.

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  • Reverse image? Are you referring to the image search feature on Google?
    – Devner
    Sep 15, 2014 at 15:05
  • Yes. You are right. Sep 16, 2014 at 4:45

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