5 Things Intellectual Property Can Do for Your Business
By Space Coast Daily // January 18, 2022
Intellectual property is a vast and complex topic, but it’s something that all businesses should be aware of. Intellectual property refers to a creator’s exclusive rights over the intangible goods they create. It includes patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets.
The benefits of intellectual property include providing a means to protect your creative work from being stolen or used without permission, providing an opportunity to make money from your creations, and giving you the chance to get credit for what you do best.
Here are some ways intellectual property can help your business.
What Is The Purpose Of Intellectual Property?
In simplest terms, intellectual property is a means for an owner to control how their work is used. This can include patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets.
Why might an owner need to protect intellectual property? The first obvious reason is to ensure they can sell their work. If you sell products and services, you’ll want to make sure they’re protected from theft or unauthorised use. A second reason is that you can use it to create more revenue. Your intellectual property rights could be used to license or grant usage to another party.
Alternatively, if your product is used in ways that aren’t in your interest, you can seek compensation for any losses you incur as a result of these activities.
How Can You Benefit From Intellectual Property?
There are many benefits to owning intellectual property. According to Heer Law, intellectual property can be the main asset that increases business value and market potential. You’ll own control of your intellectual property and how it’s used, which means that you will have exclusive rights to use your intellectual property as you see fit.
Some other benefits of owning intellectual property include:
1. Increased revenues due to licensing or granting of usage
2. Freedom from litigation
3. A means to separate yourself from the supply chain
4. A means to prove that your product was developed with genuine creative intent
5. Provide you with the opportunity to show your creativity.
For example, it can allow you to release your original video game, soundtrack, app, or article under a specific license so that you can either claim full credit for the work, or give another party the exclusive right to use your content for a limited amount of time.
For example, an app developer may choose to release a full version of their app under a Creative Commons license for non-commercial use so that they can claim full credit for the work, or give the opportunity for others to create derivative works of their app. Similarly, if an author releases their original book under a Creative Commons license, they can give other publishers the opportunity to create a translated version of their work.
Finally, intellectual property gives you a chance to separate yourself from the supply chain. If you create a video game, you may wish to release it under a royalty-free Creative Commons license so that other developers can use the code for their game or modifications to the game for free.
This ensures that the intellectual property of the original game is retained, while letting others build on that work without it being ripped off.
What Are Some Legal Details About Intellectual Property?
The laws surrounding intellectual property vary from country to country, and from industry to industry. However, there are some common misconceptions about copyright and patents.
One persistent myth is that you can patent an idea – that if an inventor claims they came up with an idea and wish to protect it, they can claim a patent on the idea. This is in fact the opposite of what patent law is about. Instead of inventors claiming that they’ve invented something, the patent system is used to protect inventions and technologies.
This means that you cannot simply patent an idea for an invention, you must actually invent a functioning product.
Furthermore, there are some things that simply cannot be patented. These include scientific theories, mathematical formulae, amongst others. So for example, while you could patent a new power generator that you invented, you could not patent the mathematical formulae for how the generator produces electricity – and in fact, patenting your invention could enable smart individuals to study your blueprint and create workarounds.
Trademarks differ from patents, but also have rules and regulations surrounding what can and cannot be trademarked. Descriptive words and adjectives cannot be trademarked, but color schemes can. So while you cannot trademark “blue logo” as a descriptive term, you can trademark the exact color pattern of your logo, assuming it is unique.