We all have experienced the feeling of being robbed of something you own. It is a mixed feeling of anger and sadness, knowing that someone took or used what you own. Sadly, this does not only apply to material things. Nowadays, even ideas can be taken away from you. And that is why it is important to protect your rights as owner as early as possible.
For our fourth episode, Danella and Cristina tackle what intellectual property is and getting the real deal if you fail to register your intellectual property before opening it to the public.
What exactly is intellectual property? According to WIPO, Intellectual property refers to the creations of the mind such as inventions, literary and artistic works, designs and symbols, names and images used in commerce. Basically, it is protected by law so that responsible person can earn their recognition or financial benefit from what they invented or created.
Danella and Cristina talked about the three main types of IP protection for your business: trademark, copyright, and patent.
The Trademark, which is more popular than the others, is a brand name which can either be a phrase or a symbol. One best example is the golden arches of McDonald’s or Nike’s swoosh. So when you see these symbols, you automatically know that it’s from McDonald’s or from Nike. Trademark can be an effective tool so that the public remember your product or service.
The second one is Copyright which pertains to architectural works, literary works, music, movies, paintings and other works, including computer programs. It is a legal protection extended to the owner of the rights in an original work.
Lastly is the Patent. A patent is a grant issued by the government to a certain product, process or an improvement of a product or process which is new, inventive and useful. One perfect example is the MacBook Air and the iPhone, these are patentable products.
WHY PROTECT THIS INVISIBLE PROPERTY?
This is a big confusion for a lot of people since it is an intangible product. It is important to trademark your logo or symbol because basically, this is to protect your idea from someone who might steal it. In addition, it can also help you build identity and branding for your company, just like all those big companies. They are very successful in building a trademark for their company.
WHAT DOES PIRACY MEAN?
By definition, piracy is the unauthorized use or reproduction of another’s work. In the Philippines, there are a lot of products displayed that are clones of the original brands or products. One example is pirated DVDs. A lot of people are buying pirated DVDs because it is cheaper than watching it in cinemas. Also, there is local business who to mislead people from these big companies, just like Adobo Putoshop, Starbuko and Caintacky Fried Chicken. These businesses are trying to catch the attention of customers, however, failed to realize the risk that they are taking of modifying a known brand.
IF I REGISTER HERE, WILL I BE COVERED EVERYWHERE?
Unluckily for us, we are not part of the Madrid Protocol which allows the trademark owner to seek registration in any of the participating companies. Therefore, you need to register your trademark locally and globally if you want to cover all of the countries for your trademark.
WHAT IS CREATIVE COMMONS?
Creative Commons is a website that allows anyone to share your knowledge and creativity for others to use and modify for as long as you make the proper credits to the owner. This unlocks the full potential of the internet to make a development, growth, and productivity of its users.
So why do you think it is necessary to have intellectual property rights? By protecting your intellectual rights, you are able to preserve your idea and this is also for companies to plan ahead of their companies’ future endeavor. Companies should be able to draft a detailed of their idea so that efforts will not be wasted. By registering your trademark or copyright, this means that you have the sole responsibility of it and you have to make sure you’ll be able to get through with it.