Intellectual property

Intellectual property (IP) is a category of property that includes intangible creations of the human intellect, and primarily encompasses copyrights, patents, and trademarks. It also includes other types of rights, such as trade secrets, publicity rights, moral rights, and rights against unfair competition. Also included are artistic works such as music, literature, discoveries, inventions, words, phrases, symbols and designs. The protection for creations of the mind seems to have originated in Venice during the 15th century, with the grant to inventors of exclusive rights for their inventions.

The law which governs this is the IP Law and ensures that the novel creations are owned by the person and can be commercialised to earn money out of the creation, albeit for a limited time. However, laws for the protection of intellectual property are not static but change in accordance with changes in technology and society.

Intellectual property rights (IPR) are the rights given to persons over the creations of their minds. They usually give the creator an exclusive right over the use of his/her creation for a certain period of time. These rights are also called as monopoly right of exploitation, are limited in scope, duration and geographical extent.

The IPR can be of different types,

Patents – A form of right granted to the owner the right to exclude others from making, using, selling the invention for a limited period of time.

Trademark – It is a distinctive sign that identifies certain goods or services produced by an individual or a company. The system of assigning a unique mark to an individual or a company for a product or a service based on quality and characteristics helps in identifying the product or service as unique.

Industrial Design – This refers to the ornamental or aesthetic aspects of an article, in three dimension or two dimension. Three dimension features include shape or surface of an article and tow dimension may include pattern, lines or colours. This applies to wide variety of industrial products and handicrafts.

Geographical indication – Some goods have specific quality which is specific to a geographic location. The goods that have specific geographical origin and possess qualities due to the place of origin can also be registered under geographical indication. Some example of this is Darjleeing Tea, Rosagulla, Basmati rice etc.