Recent trends towards patents of big companies like Apple, Google, and Facebook are alarming. A news report revealed that Apple and Google invested $20 Billion in protecting their patent rights.
This indeed shows the rising anxiety levels of Businesses when it comes to Intellectual Property. Let us try to understand why there is a need of protecting your IP registration .
WHAT IS INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY?
IP registration helps create a right over your creative mind i.e. if you’ve created/invented something and want to preserve it from being misused by others in their name; you can claim your IP rights over it. Intellectual Property includes patents, copyrights, trademarks, and design rights. They are explained as below:
Patent rights are granted to inventors to give them exclusive rights over their invention. It gives them monopoly rights to manufacture, distribute or sell their idea, method or product in the market. In India, a patent is usually granted for a period of 20 years and can be extended thereafter. This means that if a patent is granted to an ABC firm, no other firm other than ABC can sell or market the ‘patented’ product. There are three pre-requisites before a patent can be granted:
- It should be a novel idea,
- It should not be obvious or common,
- It should be of industrial use.
Copyrights are granted to the creator of a literary, dramatic, cinematographic, musical or artistic work. It protect such work to be copied or used by any other party without the consent of the original creator. Even Computer programmes are included in Copyrights. Registration of Copyrights is optional, but highly recommended in India. Copyrights are granted for the lifetime of the creator plus 60 years after his life. ip registration
Trademark is the identification mark of a particular product or service. It may be a name, symbol, design. When a trader obtains a trademark for a particular product or service, no other trader can use that trademark to sell his goods or service. For e.g. Nike’s trademark is a tick, McDonald’s trademark is an “M”, etc. They also help enhance the sale of the business due to recognition of the symbol by the customers. Before registering a trademark, it is advisable to conduct a check if a trademark by that name or symbol already exists or not.ip registration
- Design Rights:
Under Design Act, 2000, “Design means only the features of shape, configuration, pattern, ornament or composition of lines or colours applied to any article;”. These rights are granted to proprietor of any new or original design. They are initially granted for a period of 10years after which they can be renewed for every 5years.
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NEED TO PROTECT INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
IP registration acts as a registration of your idea, invention, artwork, literature, or music with the Government so as to maintain originality of your work.While one person does months or years of hard work to discover/ invent something, it is morally incorrect if any third party is allowed to use his work without his permission.
Thus, for minimizing the infringement of rights of a person, or a firm or business entity, registering your IP is highly advisable. It also ensures that your IP registration is valid and unquestionable.
HOW TO PROTECT?
India has various laws for protection of IP registration. Some of these laws are listed below:
- The Trade Marks Act, 1999
- The Copyrights Act, 1957
- The Patents Act , 1970
- The Design Act, 2000
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These laws respectively contain the procedure to register your work and obtain trademark, patent, copyright or design on it.
The procedure, in simple words, involves for an application to be made to register your work, meeting all pre-registration objections by the Controller, publishing in Journal, meeting any objections by public and then, finally awarding of IP registration Rights over your idea, innovation, product or service. ip registration