How Is Intellectual Property ‘Real’ Property?
What is Intellectual Property
Intellectual Property has re-defined the concept of ‘Property’ perceived conventionally which usually conjures up tangible things such as a land, house, car, jewellery etc. As the interpretation of ‘Property’ and ‘Ownership’ evolved over time, Intellectual Property came to be included in the meaning and definition of property, though cannot be seen, felt, touched it is none the less real enough to be audited, encashed, pledged, secured, transferred, bequeathed and sold.
How is it created
Intellectual Property Rights or ‘IPR’ refer to creations of the human mind derived out of human industry. It is also referred to as ‘Industrial Property’ at times and is inclusive of:
- Inventions – protected by Patents and Utility Models
- Brands – comprising Trademarks, Tradenames, Logos, Servicemarks, protected as Trademarks
- Industrial Designs – a resultant combination of applied art and applied science, protected as Designs
- Geographical Indications – or ‘GI’s are such products and / or goods having a specific geographical origin and unique and special qualities owing to such origins and are inclusive of human factors as well.
- Integrated Circuits – involving circuitry the layout, arrangement and design of which also forms a part of IP
- Copyrights – artistic creations and expressions in the form of prose, poetry, music, cinema, drama, fashion etc.
IPR is created everyday in the form of Research and Development (R&D), music, art, theatre, novels, improvised inventions and brand names enriching their businesses, geographical indications prized for their unique flavour and quality. These components are therefore intellectual assets that have to be nurtured, marketed and protected from imitations and mis-use.
Protection of Intellectual Property Rights:
Following methods help in protection:
Diligent National and International filings, Prosecution, Registration, timely Renewals & Maintenance, Trademark Watch etc. are some of the ways in which all the hard work, research and monetary investment gone into creating IPR can be protected.
Bringing an IP Attorney on board would be well worth considering, since strategic and timely advice towards protection, marketing and evaluation would reap tremendous benefits in the long run and shield businesses from legal and ethical issues globally.
As with real and tangible property litigation, IPR litigation also involves civil and criminal actions with heavy penalties and sanctions therefore, awareness and sensitisation is the need of the hour.
IPR Portfolio Management:
In today’s world where defining lines between real and virtual assets are diminishing on an hourly basis owing to the internet, intellectual property unlike real property has to protected at a global level where multiple jurisdictions come into play. Having a fair idea about the dos and the donts regarding various components becomes crucial.
Therefore, IPR portfolio management should be given top priority in the scheme of things either for a start-up or an established business since it involves Licensing, Franchising, Technology Transfers, Mergers and Acquisitions, Takeovers along with good will.
Hence, constructing IPR centric business plans will spell sure-shot success around the globe to all the stake holders be it for business enterprises, sole proprietorships or inventors.