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                                           A Home-Based Business Online


                                                     April 1

                                             Sent to 9,313 Subscribers

                                                 Editor: Elena Fawkner
                                           Publisher: AHBBO Publishing
                                                Best Home Based Business Ideas
                                            Contact By Email

        1.      Welcome and Update from Elena
        2.      Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Potted Plants
        3.      Feature Article - DBAs, TMs & .coms
        4.      Write-A-Book Tutorial Part 3 : Winning
        5.      Tips for Newbies
        7.      Subscription Management
        9.      Contact Information

        1.      Welcome and Update from Elena

        Hello again and a warm welcome to all the new subscribers who
        have joined us since the last issue!

        I received an email during the week from a new subscriber wanting
        to know all about business names, how to protect it from copy-cats,
        and whether it could be trademarked.  Figuring this was a subject
        near and dear to many AHBBO readers' hearts, it forms the
        subject of this week's feature article.

        I have a wonderful freebie for you this week.  Back in the early
        1970s, J.F. (Jim) Straw published a little monthly memo service that
        explained, in detail, how to operate a small business from home.
        Each of the businesses he wrote about were things he had either
        done himself; or participated in with other "kids." After the monthly
        memo was gone, he continued publishing those little reports and
        selling them for $1 each.  He sold hundreds of thousands of them
        each year.

        Some time back, he collected 17 of those reports and put them
        together in a Special Report entitled, "Seventeen (17) 'Real' Home
        Based Businesses You Can Start & Operate From Your Home."
        It's a great little seller at $10 BUT anyone who is really interested
        in starting a "real" home based business can grab a copy of it free. 
        Just request your copy at:

        As always, thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy this week's

        Remember, this ezine is for YOU!  If you have comments or
        suggestions for topics you would like to see addressed, or would
        just like to share your experiences with other subscribers, I want
        to hear from you!  Please send comments, questions and stories
        to Contact By Email .

        2.      Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Potted Plants

        By: J. F. (Jim) Straw
        © 1998 Phlander Company.

        Explanation: Fantastic as it may seem, this idea had its
        origination with my mother-in-law. She has a pair of "Green
        Thumbs" and her house is covered with flowers, vines and the

        On a weekend visit, I made a comment about her lovely flowers.
        Her response astounded me. It seems that each year she gives
        away dozens of her plants to friends, neighbors, relatives and
        acquaintances just to get the plants out of her house. She said
        that, if she didn't, the house would soon be overgrown.

        These comments prompted me to investigate the florist business.
        The discoveries I made indicate that there is a vast fortune to be
        made in this field without ever growing one plant.

        There are literally millions of women, like my mother-in-law, in
        this country who delight in growing flowers in their homes. These
        women do it for the enjoyment of having living plants decorating
        their homes - BUT - after some time, their homes become
        overcrowded with plants. Unable, by their nature, to destroy or
        discard any of their plants, they give them away to anyone who
        will have them.

        Florists, at the same time, are selling the very same plants for a
        fabulous (almost 100%) profit. Because of the nature of the florist
        business, you can make yourself a small fortune by becoming a
        "Flower Broker".

        For the rest of this report:


        There are many more ideas like this at the AHBBO Home
        Business Ideas page at free home based business ideas
        with more being added all the time.

        3.      Feature Article - DBAs, TMs & .coms

        © 2013 Elena Fawkner

        "... I'd like to register my business name with the proper town
        authorities as a sole proprietorship.  To protect myself and my
        business name from being copied and altered, do I have to
        register any and all variations of the name?  And is this done
        separately or is it done under the one application? ...  Is this
        what I need to do in order to stop anyone from using a variation
        of my business name?  And can my business name be
        trademarked along with its variations?"

        This question (an extract from an email I received from a new
        subscriber during the week) is a good illustration of how confusing
        the purpose of and difference between business names and
        trademarks can be for small business and others without ready
        access to an army of lawyers to lead them through the maze. 
        Add your domain name to the mix and it becomes as clear as

        In this article, we'll look at what business names, trademarks
        and domain names are (and aren't), what you can and need
        to do to protect them and issues to think about when deciding
        upon what to choose for your business and domain names and
        whether trademark protection is appropriate (or even possible).


        If you're going to conduct your business under a "fictitious"
        name, i.e., one other than its legal name, you will need to register
        the fictitious name with the appropriate government agency
        in your state.  This usually means your local county recorder's
        office but, depending on where you live, it may mean your
        state's Secretary of State Office.  In countries other than the
        U.S., the appropriate body may be some sort of government
        Department of Small Business.

        So what's your "legal" name?  If you're conducting business
        as a sole proprietorship, your legal name is your name, i.e.
        Fred Smith.  If you're any sort of other legal entity such as
        a corporation, limited liability company, limited partnership
        etc., the legal name of your business is the name of your
        corporation, company, or limited partnership.

        If you conduct business under your own name or that of
        your corporation, limited liability company or limited
        partnership, you do NOT need to register a fictitious business
        name with the State because you are not conducting
        business under a fictitious name, you are conducting it
        under your business's legal name.

        => Legal Purpose of a Fictitious Business Name

        The reason you must register a fictitious business name
        to operate a business under a name other than your
        business's legal name is to protect the consuming public -
        those members of the public who come in contact with your
        business - as well as other parties such as suppliers. 

        The purpose of registration is so that those who deal with your
        business can search for and identify the person(s) "behind" the
        name.  As a  fictitious business name is not a legal entity, it
        does not have contractual capacity (i.e. it cannot enter into
        contracts in its own name).  A consumer wanting to do business
        with your business needs to be able to verify that the person with
        whom he or she is contracting has authority to enter into the
        contract as the business entity.  By searching the fictitious
        business names register, the consumer can find out who is
        "behind" the business, as that is the party with whom he or she
        will be contracting (and, sometimes, suing if the transaction
        goes bad!).

        Example:  Alfreda Smith conducts her florist business under the
        registered fictitious business name, "Blooming Right".  Florist
        Supplies, Inc. wants to enter into a contract with Blooming Right
        to supply Blooming Right's stock of tulips.  As Blooming Right
        is not a legal entity and only a DBA ("doing business as", another
        term for a fictitious business name), Blooming Right does not have
        legal capacity to enter into the supply contract with Florist
        Supplies, Inc..  (Florist Supplies, Inc., of course, being a
        corporation - as evidenced by the "Inc." - is a legal entity, and
        therefore has contractual capacity.)  For this reason, Florist
        Supplies, Inc. will only be prepared to contract with Alfreda Smith,
        the legal entity behind Blooming Right.  Florist Supplies, Inc.
        identifies the legal entity with contractual capacity by searching
        the fictitious business names register.  Accordingly, the supply
        contract finally entered into will be between Florist Supplies, Inc.
        and Alfreda Smith, d/b/a Blooming Right.

        You should also know that you won't be able to open a bank
        account for your business unless and until your fictitious business
        name is registered with the state.

        Just because you've registered your business name in your county
        doesn't mean that someone else can't register the same business
        name in another county.  Registration is only designed to allow
        people who deal with your business to identify you as the person
        behind that particular business.  It doesn't give you exclusive use
        of that name for all purposes in all areas.  For this reason, if your
        business name is also your business's "brand", you should also
        register it as a trademark, if possible.


        As is evident from the purpose of registering a fictitious business
        name, a business name is NOT a trademark and a registered
        business name will generally NOT operate to protect the name
        from use by others (except as an identical or deceptively similar
        business name in the same county).  So how do you protect your
        business's "name" if it also identifies and distinguishes the source
        of your goods or services from those of your competitors'?  The
        answer is federal trademark registration.  (Although you can also
        register trademarks at the state level, state registration confers only
        limited benefits and should be considered only if federal registration
        is not possible).

        => What is a Trademark?

        As suggested above, a trademark is either "a word, phrase,
        symbol or design, or combination of words, phrases, symbols
        or designs, which identifies and distinguishes the source of
        the goods or services of one party from those of others."
        A service mark is the same thing except it relates to the
        source of a service rather than a product.

        => Registration Not Required

        A trademark (or service mark) does not need to be registered
        to attain status as a mark i.e. unregistered trademarks are
        recognized by the common law.  If you have used a distinctive
        trademark (that you own) in commerce, then you probably have
        a common law trademark already. 

        But registration confers benefits not available if you rely only on
        your common law trademark rights, such as the presumption that
        you are the owner of the mark for the goods and services specified
        in the registration and the entitlement to use the mark nationwide. 

        Absent federal registration, you would have to prove these things in
        court as preliminary questions of fact.  Imagine trying to satisfy a
        court that you are entitled to exclusive nationwide use of the mark
        if you've only been using the mark in two states.  Other benefits of
        federal registration include: (a) the fact that registration acts as
        constructive notice of your claim to the mark; (b) federal court
        jurisdiction can be invoked; and (c) registration can be used as a
        basis for obtaining registration in other countries.

        => What Can Be Trademarked?

        It may be easier to answer this question by looking first at what
        cannot be trademarked.  The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
        (PTO) won't allow you to register a mark that is not distinctive
        (discussed below); that is already in use or that contains names
        of living persons without their consent; the United States flag;
        other federal and local government insignia; name or likeness of
        a deceased U.S. President without the widow's consent; words
        or symbols that disparage living or deceased persons, institutions,
        beliefs or national symbols and marks that are judged immoral,
        deceptive or scandalous.

        => Distinctiveness

        As a general rule, a trademark must be distinctive in order
        to be accepted for registration.  This is an enormously complex
        issue in trademark law and beyond the scope of this article. 
        But for our purposes, just keep in mind that a mark that is in
        ordinary or common usage in the community will not be
        capable of registration because no one person can be said
        to be the "owner". 

        For example, let's say your business is selling still life paintings. 
        You would have trouble registering "Still Life" as a trademark
        because it is a term in common usage and has a general meaning
        in the community.  (Note though that certain types of marks while
        not distinctive YET may become so in the future, i.e. they are
        capable of acquiring a secondary meaning.  Such marks may be
        eligible for registration and limited protection on the supplemental
        trademark register.  For more on this, consult your attorney.*)

        (On the other hand, you may well be able to register the name
        Still Life as your fictitious business name provided the same or a
        deceptively similar name is not already registered in your county.)

        In order to maximize the chances of your trademark being
        accepted for registration, therefore, try to come up with a
        "coined" or "fanciful" name.  The example often given by
        trademark lawyers of a particularly successful coined name
        is Kodak.  It's a name that means nothing apart from its
        association with cameras and now expanded lines of
        products but is immediately identifiable by anyone who sees
        it as a trademark of the Eastman Kodak company.

        So, the more novel, unique and fanciful the name, the more
        likely you will be able to register it federally.


        So, how does your domain name figure into all of this?  In
        particular, what is the interrelationship between registered
        trademarks and domain names?

        => Domain Names VS. Trademarks : David VS. Goliath

        As a general rule, as the law presently stands, it is
        *possible* to register any domain name that isn't already
        taken without regard to whether that name is a trademark
        owned by a third party.  *But do so at your peril*.  Courts are
        increasingly siding with trademark owners against domain
        name holders even when the domain name holder acquired
        the domain name with perfectly innocent intentions, i.e. with
        no intention of infringing on the trademark or holding it for
        ransom (cybersquatting).

        => Domain Names AS Trademarks

        Let's say that the domain name you want to use is not
        already a trademark.  Can you register it as a trademark?
        Depends.  Maybe.

        A distinctive, coined domain name may well be capable of
        trademark registration for the reasons discussed above.
        An example is my own domain, ahbbo.com.  The word "ahbbo"
        has no common, ordinary meaning and so would most likely be
        capable of being registered as a federal trademark.  If I tried to
        register the trademark "A Home-Based Business Online"
        I would have trouble even though I own that domain name
        because the words are, in one variation or another, in
        common, ordinary usage.

        To be registrable, however, the domain name must act as
        a source identifier for the product or service offered by the
        business (simply because ANY trademark must identify and
        distinguish the source of the product or service), and
        not merely act as an address used to access a website.

        SUMMING UP

        Let's go back now and answer the original question:

        "... I'd like to register my business name with the proper town
        authorities as a sole proprietorship.  To protect myself and my
        business name from being copied and altered, do I have to
        register any and all variations of the name?  And is this done
        separately or is it done under the one application? ...  Is this
        what I need to do in order to stop anyone from using a variation
        of my business name?  And can my business name be
        trademarked along with its variations?"

        =>  "To protect myself and my business name from being
        copied and altered, do I have to register any and all variations
        of the name?"

        No.  The question misconceives the function and effect of a
        fictitious busness name.  The only function of the registered
        business name is to allow the consuming public and others,
        such as suppliers, to ascertain the legal entity behind the
        fictitious business name.  It is not the business's name that
        requires protection from being copied and altered, it is the
        business's trademark(s).  If you are looking to establish a "brand"
        with your business name, make sure the name is the same as
        your trademarks and register your trademarks.

        => "Do I have to register any and all variations of the name?"

        This was asked in the context of the business name.  For the
        reason just given, the answer is no.  But for the purposes of
        our trademark analysis, let's reframe the question.  Is it
        necessary to register any and all variations of the trademark?

        No.  Once you have federal trademark protection for your mark,
        the trademark examiner will (in theory, at least) not allow
        anyone else to register a mark that is identical or deceptively
        similar to your mark.


        If you're still in the planning stages of your business and
        haven't as yet registered a fictitious business name or decided
        on a domain name, stop and think.  Now's the time to make
        some pretty crucial decisions about the future protection of the
        intellectual property of your business.  Here's the sequence I

        1.  Trademark

        This is the most important of the three (i.e. business name,
        trademark and domain name) from the point of view of
        differentiating your product/service from your competitors'.
        So take your time and coin a mark that has no meaning outside
        of your product or service (remember the Kodak example) but at
        the same time try and make it suggestive of the product or service
        you offer.  Also, try and keep it short and memorable.  Yes, this
        IS a difficult task!  If it was easy, everyone would do it wouldn't

        2.  Domain Name

        The second most important of the three.  Once you've registered
        your coined trademark, register the same name as your domain
        name.  See the importance of making the mark suggestive, short
        and memorable?  Obviously, in the process of creating your mark,
        you should also check to make sure that the same domain name
        is available also.

        3.  Business Name

        The least important and easiest of the three.  Here, though, the
        suggestiveness of your trademark is more important.  Sure,
        registering a business name is only to allow others to identify the
        legal entity behind it but it's also the name that goes on your
        letterhead so it needs to have some sort of meaning relevant to
        the product or service that you're selling.  So when you're working
        on your trademark/domain name, make sure that, in addition
        to it being distinctive and memorable, it also suggests the type
        of business or product/service involved.  Naturally, when you're
        going through this process, also make sure the business name is
        available in your county.  Of course, by conceiving a coined
        name, you're almost guaranteeing that it won't already be taken.

        Hopefully you can see that by thinking through the interrelatedness
        of each of your business name, trademark and domain name
        you can establish your business in such a way that each element
        reinforces the others, thereby strengthening your brand.  Once
        you have a firmly established brand, your marketing efforts become
        a whole lot easier.  Promote the brand and you automatically promote
        the product/service you offer, and vice versa.

        There's no substitute for getting this bit right.  Do it right first time
        and you won't have to waste time and resources two years from now
        trying to bring your name, your trademarks and your domain names
        into line.  The legal issues can be complex, however, and this is
        one area where you should *definitely* consult your lawyer*.  The
        relatively small cost you spend at this stage will pay off BIG TIME
        down the track.


        ** Reprinting of this article is welcome! **

        This article may be freely reproduced provided that: (1) you
        use the autoresponder copy which contains a resource box;
        (2) you leave the resource box intact; and (3) you only
        mail to a 100% opt-in list.

        Fire Your Boss and Work at Home! Forget the suit and the
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        also needed. Download your FREE E-BOOK NOW

        4.      Write-A-Book Tutorial - Part 3: Winning

        by Steve Manning

        Whew! I got literally dozens of writing samples from last week's
        writing exercise! They were great!

        Did you get a chance to do that writing exercise in the last lesson?
        Geez, I hope so. If you didn't, you really should go back and try it.
        You really will be shocked at the results. People all around the world
        are almost always astonished.

        If you did try it and you met with results you were less than happy
        with, the reason--based on having done this with thousands of people
        --is pretty obvious... you were thinking too much! During the five
        minutes, did your pen stop moving at any time? Did your fingers
        hesitate over the keyboard? That's when you were thinking!

        Go back and try it again after you've finished reading this lesson.
        Don't worry, I'll provide the hotlink at the bottom of this lesson (the
        words, however, may be different! So be prepared!).

        If you did write for five solid minutes, take a look at what you've
        produced. Go ahead, read it to yourself. No, this isn't a trick. Your
        writing is far better than you ever thought possible.

        There are reasons for this and in the success program we get into
        them fairly deeply.

        But for now, all I want you to know is that you can write both
        quickly and you can write well. But this is just the tip of the iceberg
        as far as information I've got waiting for you.

        Just as a teaser, I want to let you in on something. Did you write
        2/3 of a page in those five minutes? Just about everyone does. If
        not the first time, then certainly the second time. If you did, then
        you'll have no trouble writing a 10-page chapter in just 75 minutes
        worth of writing time. No, not in one go! I don't want you to end up
        as a puddle on the floor! But 75 minutes of writing will give you a
        10-page chapter for your book.

        That's exciting. In the success program, I tell you exactly how to
        develop your book from beginning to end, chapter by chapter,
        whether it's fiction or non-fiction.

        Unabashed self-promotion moment...

        In the next few lessons, I'm going to be giving you a lot of information,
        and I'm also going to try every way I can to get you to order the writing
        success system, "How To Write A Book On Anything in 14 Days or
        Less... Guaranteed!" Ironically, I'm doing them both for the same
        reason: I want you to write your book. That's the reason I'm on this
        earth, to help as many people as possible write as many books as
        they can, or want to. So if I seem a little strident at times, it's not
        because I have a mercenary agenda. It's because I'm absolutely
        obsessed with helping you get that book of yours written and

        Why Your Book Is The Magic Key For Unlimited Publicity and Low
        Cost Promotion

        The media's favorite interview is the celebrity. Like it or not, when
        you become the author of a book, you also become a celebrity. You
        get all the natural benefits that go with celebrity status.

        Let me give you an example. As the editor of a small trade magazine,
        I'm well known in a specific industry. Unknown beyond, but well known
        within. I could be put on a credit card commercial, where they ask, "Do
        you know this man?" Only in my industry would they say "Yes".

        But in my industry, I can phone the editor of a journal and get a
        response, immediately. At conferences, everyone wants to take me out
        for dinner.

        That kind of celebrity status pays off big. I have a friend who has similar
        status in the medical profession. He is a regular guest of Question of the
        Week on the six o'clock news. He is on the radio. He is in the
        newspaper. Why? He wrote a book, so he is THE CELEBRITY.

        When people ask me what they should write about, I tell them, quite
        honestly, what you know about. And what do you know better than
        your job? And, in doing so, you will be promoted to the top of your

        With the techniques you'll discover it will take only a matter of days
        to accomplish, and when you consider the alternatives, the choice
        is obvious. So, if you're in a hurry, do yourself a favor and go to

        I should also tell you that in your next lesson, I've got a very special
        gift for you... Read that lesson. I don't want you to miss out now...

        PS -- Promised you a repeat of that writing exercise, remember? Here's
        the page again, but have your pen, paper and watch ready. The words
        may have changed!


        You can receive daily instalments of Steve's free Write-A-Book
        tutorial by signing up at his website.

        Click here to go to Steve's site:


        Steve Manning is author of "How to Write A Book On Anything
        In 14 Days Or Less ... Guaranteed! -- An Expert's Step-by-Step

        There has never been a more exciting time to enter the travel
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        operate your very own home-based cyber travel business from
        the comforts of your home or office. With just a few simple
        steps, you can be on your way to enjoying an exciting career
        in the New Online Travel Industry.

        5.      Tips for Newbies

        TIP #1: How to create a custom screen saver in Windows 98

        Windows 98 has a cool feature that lets you create your own
        dynamic screen savers using text, of all things. Here's how
        it works.

        1. Open your Display Properties dialog box by right clicking
        a blank area of your desktop and selecting 'Properties'.
        2. Click the Screen Saver tab.
        3. From the Sreen Saver drop down box, select 3D text.
        4. Click the Settings... button next to the drop down box.
        5. In the 3D Text Setup dialog, click Chosse Font... and
        select the Wingdings or Webdings font, and click OK to return
        to the 3D Text Setup area.
        6. In the Display area, click the Text radio button, and in the
        field, type a letter. The letter you type will correspond to a
        specific Webding or Winding character. Adjust any of the other
        parameters in this dialog box, such as size, speed, and
        7. Click OK. You'll see a preview in the mini monitor in the
        Display Properties dialog box. Preview the image in real
        size by clicking the Preview button.

        You can change a lot of the parameters of the object displayed
        by making the adjustments in the 3D text setup area. You can
        even choose your own bitmap graphic for the texture of any
        object using the Texture selector. Have fun with this one!

        TIP #2: Taking stock of your property holdings.

        Windows uses a management system that includes what's
        called a 'Property Sheet' for each icon or file you see on
        your computer. This is like describing the properties of a
        pencil: It's cylindrical, made of wood, has an eraser at one
        end, and a graphite writing tip at the other. So what are the
        properties of the My Computer icon on your desktop? And how do
        you find out?

        Easy. Just RIGHT click the icon. In fact, you can RIGHT click
        any icon or file on your computer, and a context menu will
        appear. At the bottom of that menu will be the 'Properties'
        item. A click there and you'll bring up the associated Property
        Sheet for that item. Try it. You'll discover a lot of info about
        your computer's files this way. Instead of calling it a 'Property
        Sheet' you could call it a 'Property Window' if you wanted to.
        Whatever. :-)


        Tips by Tom Glander and Joe Robson of The Newbie
        Club. The best Newbie Site ever to hit the Web.

        7. Subscription Management


        To SUBSCRIBE to this Newsletter:
        Home Business Newsletter

        To UNSUBSCRIBE from this Newsletter:

        If you find this newsletter valuable, please forward it
        in its entirety to your friends, family and associates!

        9. Contact Information

        Elena Fawkner, Editor
        A Home-Based Business Online
        Contact By Email
        Work at Home Online

        Copyright © 1999-2016 AHBBO Publishing
        All Rights Reserved

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