How important is an intellectual property right (IPR)? IPR protects the creator or inventor’s benefits, so that it stimulates the interest of innovation. According to United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the number of patent application has been increased over 450% from 1980 to 2010. It shows that people now are more concern about copyright issues. Although owners have the patent application, the violating of copyrights and patents are still happening all over the world.
The article, “Who is This Man, and Why Is He Screaming?” written by Rachel Kadish, indicates the problems about IPR that the author’s cousin, Noam Galai, to upload his portrait to Flickr and later ...view middle of the document...
The first wall to protect IP can be built up by the owner. In terms of material of the wall, it should be the knowledge in IPR. People have not fully developed concept on IPR, so they are lacking experience to secure virtual belongings. For example, Galai posted his portrait on a social website without a licensing (Kadish 260). The owner thinks that their own account can protect their arts, articles or photos. However, most of the social platforms are treated all user accounts as the company’s property. Before using any medium to distribute IP, it is important to read the policy of the medium carefully.
In addition, the owner has to understand different sections and terms of the policy, so as to choose the most suitable one for registration. According to Jolly’s study, the terms are Patents, Registered Designs, Trademarks and Copyrights which are slightly different from others (Jolly 1). As an example, the owner wants to protect his or her design of the property, but it is registered for the Copyrights term which only prevents a product from being copied. It results that the competitor can simply change the color or shape of the design which is still legally accepted and does not oppose the term. Although owners can prefer to register all the terms, it is time consuming and costs too much to compare with choosing a specific term.
Furthermore, the terms are changed by time and have so many details, so it may be difficult for the owner to select a correct term for his or her IP. An example is mask works (semi products for integrated circuits), which the time limit is much shorter than other terms (Kaur 278). It is like Jolly says in his essay, “Although the process of obtaining IP looks deceptively simple, like many things the devil is in the detail” (1). That is the reason why some owners have to consult with lawyers or experts every time before placing the registration.
Moreover, the application procedure of the patent is time consuming. After finishing the application stage and receiving a confirmation number of the application from the USPTO, the owner still have to keep the IP by themselves for approximately two months because the USPTO needs to verify and examine the IP for each single application before a registration certificate is issued to the owner. Some owners may think that their IP is under protected by IPR at the very beginning. In fact, however, according to USPTO, the confirmation is only for notification of receiving the application. In other words, it does not mean that the property is secured by law.
The owner acts an important role in securing intellectual property. Understanding intellectual property rights, choosing the adequate terms, and filing the intellectual property are the duties that should be taken in order to build up the defensive wall. The implementation of intellectual property rights is not only the owner’s responsibility, but the user.