In a broad description, the term “intellectual property” means an exclusive temporary property right to a result of a human’s intellectual creation. This right is legally protected and owned by a company or an author. There are many different kinds of intellectual property, but the most common and well-known of them are copyrights, trademarks, and patents. Intellectual property, essentially, protects intangible assets of a business and does not allow their use without legal consent. The law that regulates intellectual property establishes an author’s monopoly to implement and gain profit from the results of their creative work. In order for other people or companies to use that creative work, they have to get legal permission from the author, as well as contribute a certain and prearranged amount of profits to them. United Nations inquire that “the exclusive rights granted by patents give the owner the opportunity to obtain from the national courts one or more injunctions to prevent or stop the infringing activity” (27). By balancing out the interests of inventors and the market, the intellectual property system fosters a supportive environment where creativity and innovation would flourish.
The expansive influence of technological progress and globalization of the world economy poses a tangible problem to the issue of intellectual property. The significance of intellectual activity and its results grows exponentially, as well as the importance of the legal protection of new ideas and inventions. As state ICC and WIPO, “in the current knowledge-driven, private sector-oriented economic development paradigm, the different types of intangible assets of a business are often more important and valuable than its tangible assets” (1). With the rise of the Internet and digital innovations, intellectual property laws faced a new challenge – they need to evolve and adjust to the demands today’s situation is presenting. The faster the process of digitalization goes, the more actively technologies develop, and the more willingly people are involved in information exchange, the more intellectual property objects are used and, the higher their economic value. Consequently, the number of conflicts and claims inevitably increases. Moreover, the results of creative activity determine the tendencies of the economic growth of the country, so intellectual property law becomes the most important legal institution today.
Today, the competition on the market is very high – companies race each other to provide a variety of new services or different improvements for the existing ones, a more inclusive environment, or more activities that are enjoyable and beneficial. However, in every market area, the most important competition is for technology. Innovations are of the greatest value in the knowledge-based developmental process of today, so they must be adequately protected. Intellectual property can cover many different areas, from logos to corporate identity to even the products, services, and processes that set your business proposal apart from any other. For many companies, patents or trademarks, or copyrights not only protect an idea or concept – they provide a legal cover for business assets that can be an integral part of a company’s core services. When these creative ideas are used without permission, the business might suffer from a decline in profits or even a theft of intellectual property when someone else patents their ideas. As the economy’s main orientation shifts from material production to innovational development, it is clear that further researches on the intellectual property issue are unavoidable.
It might sound strange, but intellectual property laws extend to companies of any rate, including the biggest corporations and leaders of the market. If someone runs a small business, it is highly recommended to legally protect any of the unique products or services. If the intellectual property is not patented, other companies might reclaim and use it, which may result in slow growth or loss of revenue for the original brand. Moreover, legally securing intellectual property might provide a business an unobvious benefit: if the company’s balance sheet contains such assets, its shares are more expensive, as well as more attractive for investors. United Nations introduce another point: “Well-designed intellectual property rights systems give temporary exclusive rights to inventors and thereby increase their chances to recover the often substantial upfront investments they need to make to generate innovations and to bring them to market” (1). That is why it is necessary to study the topic of intellectual property and commercial profits – first of all, to prevent conflicts on the market and ensure the most efficient distribution of patented technologies.
The structure of modern legislation provides protection to any original ideas and developments from copying or mimicry, regardless of any additional formalities. Luo provides a great insight on intellectual property in biological studies: “intellectual property rights carry the important role of protecting biological genetic resources from being stolen by other countries and promoting the access and benefit-sharing of biological genetic resources” (313-314). Protected by the law, intellectual property owners can enter into cross-licensing agreements with companies and businesses, as well as other owners, thereby exchanging the right to use patents and establishing mutually beneficial cooperation. This also reveals the potential of intellectual property rights: for example, the ability to transform the market for your business and influence the consumers’ minds. The development of the intellectual property system can change the world for the better by encouraging the creators to bring new ideas to the world and giving them the opportunity to capitalize on them.
International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) & World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Making Intellectual Property Work for Business: A Handbook for Chambers of Commerce and Business Associations Setting up Intellectual Property Services. ICC Publications, 2011.
Luo, Yayun. “Intellectual Property Protection of Biological Genetic Resources.” Proceedings of the 6th Annual International Conference on Social Science and Contemporary Humanity Development (SSCHD 2020), vol. 517, 23 Jan. 2021, pp. 313–316., Web.
United Nations. Intellectual Property Commercialization: Policy Options and Practical Instruments. United Nations Publications, 2011.