Charles J. Tawk | Partner
8th June, 2020
You may already know the answers to most of the questions I will ask later in this article and I guess that you also know that the inventors, authors, and music composers own their work. From this proprietorship, some consequences may rise, and you probably are conscious of the fact that you cannot just copy or purchase a copy of their work without consideration of their rights. However, few know that intellectual property encompasses many rights under its umbrella namely: copyrights, related rights, industrial rights, and trademarks. The idea of intellectual property is a logical result of the history of mankind since it has always been a story of imagination, innovation, and creativity. It is the inspiration of the globe's inventors that has allowed humankind to advance to today’s heights. Therefore, the protection of intellectual property is ensured at the national and international level.
By asking the below 11 questions, I will try to cover an overview of intellectual property rights and perhaps I will push you to protect yourselves as well as others, and through this encourage all rights holders to keep on their dazzling innovations.
1) What forms of intellectual creations fall under intellectual property (IP)?
2) What is copyright?
3) What is covered by copyright?
Copyright does not protect ideas. For example, the thought of taking an image of a sunset is not protected by copyright. Therefore, anyone could take such an image. However, an image of a sunset taken by an artist who stuffed out a registration type, paid the specified fees, and received a certificate of registration is protected. In such a case, if anyone makes copies of the photograph and starts selling them without the consent of the artist, that person would be violating the photographer’s rights.
4) What forms of rights will copyright provide?
5) How long will copyright last?
6) Can you utilize somebody else’s work while not having his/her permission?
Such cases of free use could vary from country to country and it is wise to revert to the national law of that country to verify whether advantage may be taken of such a chance.
7) Who is protected under related rights clauses?
8) What may be a trademark?
9) What are the benefits of trademarks?
10) How may I protect my trademark?
Note that, unless a given trademark is protected in a very specific country, it may be freely employed by a third party.
11) What protection is provided by a trademark?
I hope this article highlighted the importance of intellectual property. However, I think the world needs a very urgent update to the existing guidelines, because cyberspace is changing perpetually and the edge-less digital world makes IP rights protection really tough.
I also hope the following sample of questions will have an answer soon: If I post a blog in a forum, will it be protected under copyright? As an internet user, do I have privacy rights? Should podcasting be charged? Etc...
Reference: WIPO, World Intellectual Property Organization
About the Author
Mr. Charles Tawk is a Partner with Meirc Training & Consulting. Charles holds a Master of Science in Human Resource Management and Training from the University of Leicester- UK and a Bachelor degree of laws from the Lebanese University. Charles is a senior certified professional by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM-SCP)-USA, a certified training practitioner (CTP™) from the Institute of Performance and Learning- Canada, certified in occupational health and safety from Nebosh-UK, and a registered organization development consultant with the International Society for Organization Development and Change (ISODC)-USA.More