Your App Terms and Conditions set out the terms on which App users can use your App and the terms on which you will provide access to your App. This is an important document that sets out which intellectual property you own and the way in which your App users can use both your content and user-generated content. Undoubtedly, you spent countless time, money and energy developing and designing your App. You should then be taking steps to ensure that you protect your intellectual property and that you set out your intellectual property rights from the outset when users download your app and install it. The intellectual property your App contains may be made up of both your intellectual property, licensed content and material and open source, licenced and original code.
Before drafting your App Terms and Conditions, you should also make sure that you have the correct licences and assignments in relation to the intellectual property in your App. When you are in the process of developing your App, you should confirm whether your App developer has assigned you the App’s intellectual property and that you have obtained all the appropriate licences in relation to content and code.
You should also consider applying to trademark your brand name and logo. Trade mark registration will strengthen your intellectual property rights and guard against competitors profiting from your brand name and reputation. Applying for a trade mark can be costly and an arduous process. So, it is important to submit your application early and make allowances for addressing any rejection or opposition to your trade mark.
Your intellectual property and copyright clause will explicitly set out and define the different types of intellectual property that your App will include. You should also set out that the users agree that you own this intellectual property. A comprehensively drafted clause will include the obligations imposed on your users in relation to the intellectual property and licences. They should agree that they will not breach any third party intellectual property rights when using the App.
In this section of your App Terms and Conditions, the clause will usually set out your End User Licence, which will address the licence that the user has to use the App. Typically, you will grant the user non-exclusive, non-transferable, revocable licence to use the App for their own non-commercial use. You should also make it clear that the intellectual property in the App is being licenced rather than assigned.
We cannot overstate the importance of a thorough and comprehensively drafted Application Terms and Conditions. A tightly-worded intellectual property clause can protect one your business’ most important assets.
LegalVision can assist you with a variety of other intellectual property issues such as trade mark protection and intellectual property licences. So if you’re in need of legal advice in relation to Apps or intellectual property, please get in touch on 1300 544 755. One of our experienced IT lawyers would be delighted to answer any questions and step you through protecting your App’s intellectual property.
You may also find the following articles on App Terms and Conditions relevant:
- App Terms and Conditions: Disclaimers and Liability Clause
- App Terms and Conditions: Acceptable Use and Prohibited Use Clause
- App Terms and Conditions: User Information, Privacy and Security Clause
- App Terms and Conditions: User Warranties, Payments Clause
- App Terms and Conditions: Acceptance, Eligibility and Additional Term Clause