Intellectual Property Rights:  IP Essentials

Intellectual property rights exist to encourage creativity and the development of innovation.  Intellectual Property rights aims to reward those who create something that has not previously existed.

This creation could be an invention, a brand, a piece of writing, a painting, a design, a piece of music, software, a new plant variety or an electrical circuit.

Making an income from your creation is an exciting prospect for any creator.  However, before jumping to the first sale, there are some basic principles to understand about IP.  

Firstly, Intellectual Property rights vary in what they protect. A logo or brand may be protected by trademarks. Copyright will not protect the idea of the story or painting but will protect the form of expression. The appearance of a chair or other industrial works may be protected by designs, but a design will not protect the method by which it works or its function. Patents and trade secrets are used to protect ideas, methods and functions of an innovation.

Ownership of IP

Ownership of Intellectual Property rights provides the right to prevent others from using your innovation for personal or commercial gain. Understanding if you are the rightful owner of your ideas and creations is important. Having systems in place to protect the IP and your ownership are essential.

The rights that you have as an owner may be passed on to others.  This can occur through either assignment or an exclusive licence. It includes the right to protect your IP from infringement. Knowing which licensing strategy is right to use for your IP is important.

Finally, if you have used someone else’s products or methods in developing your IP, you may need to acquire commercial rights to such things before you sell your innovation.  Others may also have developed and protected similar IP before you completed your work. This may allow those parties to stop you exploiting your innovation.

TechMAC has the expertise to help you manage and protect your creations, products and ideas.