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Issues Around Intellectual Property Rights Essay

994 words - 4 pages

Intellectual property rights (IPR) are extremely boring. This is a simple truth. There is nothing exciting about discussing copyrights, patents, trademarks, trade secrets. There is no such thing as an invigorating discussion revolving around the legal battles of Isaac Newton v. Gottfried Wilhelm. It just doesn’t happen. What does happen, however, are “invigorating discussions” revolving around sites like Limewire and megashare being shut down. A woman who was sued for illegally downloading ten songs was found guilty and forced to pay a fee of $10,000.
There is this issues when it comes to IPR, this illusion that there are only two sides of a fence to stand on regarding how beneficial or detrimental IPR is in today’s society. Some people decide that IPR protects people from having their ideas stolen, promotes a healthy flow of inventions and discoveries for monetary gain, and in turn produce a flourishing, healthy economy. Other people feel that IPR advocates monopolies, encourages lawsuits, hurts “the little guy”, and ultimately crushes creativity, leaving little left to gain unless you are already a large and successful company.
Intellectual property rights are not perfect. IPR was put into effect at least as far back as 1867 (source). The laws have been morphed, mended, updated, and re-done ever since. The issue, is that there are issues not being discussed. Medicinal patents on AIDS/HIV medicine make it too expensive for many developing countries, those most in need of the medicine, to purchase it. Countries like Brazil struggle to provide children’s Tylenol to its citizens (source). Bosnia bittorrents Microsoft Word in its government offices because it can’t afford it. The real issue here seems to be why intellectual property rights are so often used as a sweeping international law for countries that are not on equal standing with one another. This paper will highlight the differing benefits and detriments of intellectual property rights in both developed and developing countries in order to discuss why intellectual property law is a flawed system that overall hinders the international economy more than it enables it.
Intellectual Property Rights are a means of rewarding and protecting innovation. They balance public and private interests by protecting innovation, and this is, essentially, the essence of Intellectual Property legislation. In fact, due to developments in science and genealogy have opened the door to Intellectual Property Rights in a completely new field. IPR was created in order to give the creator exclusive rights over the use of their creation for a certain amount of time, and only within a certain territory, depending on where the rights were obtained.
Intellectual Property legislation typically and customarily only recognizes two main categories of protection. Copyright and rights related thereto, and industrial property.(source) Copyrights and all rights related thereto are typically concerned with whatever kind...

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