Trade Secrets

When you create, design, or invent things, the rules of intellectual property (IP) determine who owns your creations and whether or not you can prevent other people from copying them. If you work in a creative or innovative field, you should know enough about IP to make intelligent decisions about your job or business.You should understand the ownability of your own ability.

This book provides a working understanding of the four primary forms of IP: patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets. You will learn what these forms of IP protect, how to obtain them, and how to avoid having them used against you by others.

Intellectual property is a complex subject; expertise in the field requires years of study and practice. By necessity, then, I have significantly simplified this material. This book will not prepare you to take the patent bar exam, but it will help you understand how IP can affect your life for better and for worse.

Brent Britton

Entrepreneur. Lawyer. Scientist. Musician.

A Silicon Valley veteran, Britton has been practicing Intellectual Property law since the early 1990’s for entrepreneurs, engineers, artists, and companies both large and small.

As the only graduate of the MIT Media Laboratory to become a lawyer, Britton is uniquely skilled in both the art and science of intellectual property. Alongside his master’s degree from MIT, Britton holds a Juris Doctor from the Boston University School of Law, and a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Maine.

A prolific writer and speaker, Britton published
his first digital works on the internet in 1984.

Contact Brent

What Intellectual Property Can Do For You

Forestall Competition
Reduce Risk
Generate Cash
Create New Assets

People Are Talking!

“For every creative person in the world today, the question of who owns, and how to own, their own creativity is paramount. Britton's new book demystifies the complex world of intellectual property in a simple, approachable voice that's both comprehensive and soulful. As a card-carrying lawyer and MIT-trained technologist, Britton delivers decades worth of invaluable insights that you'll immediately recognize as good, common sense that can be used on a daily basis.”
John Maeda, Ph.D.
President, Rhode Island School of Design
Author, The Laws of Simplicity and Redesigning Leadership
“Britton is undoubtedly a gifted intellectual property attorney, but it is clear after reading this book that he has completely missed his calling as a professor. You know how there was this one professor in college that actually got you so excited and stimulated about that incredibly boring subject? Well, this book is like that.

Every other book I have seen on the subject of intellectual property put me to sleep. Unlike all of them, Britton doesn’t merely define what terms mean - he gives you a practical understanding of what the terms mean from a smart business strategy sense. He conveys *functional knowledge* from his decades of experience as an intellectual property attorney. His approach grounds this otherwise abstract subject in reality, making it both easy for anyone to understand and apply in the real world.

This is the most user-friendly book on intellectual property I have ever read and it comes with my highest recommendation.”
Joe Salama
Entrepreneur, Author, Editor, Publisher
“Everyone should know the information in this book. Britton explains intellectual property in a primer that is simultaneously technical, concise and fun. The book's friendly graphics and cozy style put the reader at ease while tackling a weighty subject. A must-read for entrepreneurs and executives, artists and creatives, voters and policy-makers.”
Tony Parisi
Serial entrepreneur and career CTO/architect
Co-creator, Virtual Reality Markup Language (VRML)
Founder, ViZi
Author, WebGL Up and Running (O'Reilly 2012); Programming 3D Applications with HTML5 and WebGL (O'Reilly 2013)
“Ownability, is a must read for every creative individual who comes up with the latest and greatest idea. Whether it is artwork, design, a product, a service, a new business idea, a new process, or a name, you need to have this book by your bedside and refer to it often. I never would have thought a book about intellectual property could be fun to read but Ownability is that book. It is written concisely and clearly and presents this complex subject matter in an informative and useful way. Get this book, read it, and have it handy when you come up with your next great idea.”
Larry R. Thompson
President, Ringling College of Art and Design

Discover Your Ownability!

Our country’s founders had the foresight to recognize that a nation will grow in proportion to the energy and spirit of its creative class.