Intellectual property (IP) lies at the core of every organization. A few decades back, it didn’t used to be. As such, now more than ever, it’s emphasized, placed directly in the cross-hairs by a wide range of cyber-attacks.
What is IP? It can be anything from a specific manufacturing process to ideas and plans for launching a product, a trade secret, or a list of the states in which your copyrights are registered. Imagine it’s a piece of intangible proprietary information. According to the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) definition, IP encompasses all creations of the mind -from literary, inventions, pictures, artistic works, designs used in business, and symbols; anything your mind creates is considered IP if original. So how do you keep it safe? Or, more importantly, how do you prepare for an IP case?
Hire Professional Help
For most of you, the process of obtaining intellectual property looks simple; like everything in life, the devil is in the detail. Let’s consider copyrights as an example. The process is quite effortless; you have to file paperwork with a relevant body indicating that a copyright is needed and offer the identity of the individual applying for a description of the “product” for which the copyright is needed.
Once you’ve obtained your copyrights, you can hire an IP lawyer to accompany you to the court or use a reliable transcribing service to detail your case. However, knowing your copyrights can help you better understand from whom to protect them.
Make Sure You Know Your IP Rights
IP rights are widely, and each represents a defensive action to undergo legal action if a third party infringes. To put it simply:
- Patents defend your creation – overall, things that are original and not noticeable – and the way they work. Most of the time, they are referred to as” everything under the sun made by man.”
- Registered designs defend the presence of products (not how they work, which is protected by copyrights).
- Trademarks protect the brand and everything from names and logos.
- Copyrights protect the expression of ideas – like words someone chooses to use to describe your concept – not an idea itself.
Most companies ignore the trinity of trademarks, copyrights, and designs. The truth is, trademarks are probably the only intellectual property most brands need or have.
If you Don’t Protect Your IP, Your Invention is Less Likely to Happen
Perhaps you’re not a business tycoon yourself, but having an idea of how you would like to see your invention exploited – it may, after all, make the world somewhat better. You can choose to publicize your idea or allow people to use it freely. But you can’t know exactly if they will use it. Most entrepreneurs consider that publishing their ideas will bring them more attention and chances to exploit them.
While it may echo truth in some instances, some innovations require investment, and investors are seeking a return on their money. But releasing an idea without any Intellectual property protection can only attract competitors who can undercut you as an investor.
To sum it up, you can never act too early; however, it is very simple to act too late. Like most topics that include the law, IP is a tiring topic, so you should try to obtain the best possible advice you can.