Innovation is great gift for human mind. However, if it is not shared any innovation would not really help mankind. So the real challenge is to encourage people to innovate and share it with others. Now without proper incentive, no one would want to share the fruits of long hours of research for free. Intellectual property law has been developed to strike a fine balance between these two contradictory concepts.
Innovation: An Intellectual property
Intellectual property is any creation of the human mind which can help or benefit the general public. These are intangible properties which cannot be seen or measured. However, they can do some good to the public or the world in general. Intellectual property laws help protect the innovation for the innovator. If someone invests time and effort in coming up with something creatively useful, they have the right over that innovation. These laws ensure that the innovator is give due credits and compensation when others use the creation for their benefit.
Kinds of Intellectual properties
Innovation need not be scientific always. There are many other creative works like poems, novels, etc. which are the intellectual properties of the poet or the author. Such intellectual properties are protected by Copyright laws in various nations. Any other innovation which can be monetized is typically protected by Patent laws. Sometimes people come up with innovative creations to protect the goodwill of a service, rather than the service itself. This goodwill can be protected by trademarks and there are laws around that. Thus these laws can help foster innovation.
Importance of competition
Competition is very important for the progress of any civilization. Unless you have people compete with each other in a healthy manner, there will be no development, no innovation and hence we cannot better our lives. Competition begets innovation. It is not surprising that if one can create the right environment to support innovation, competition will bolster it to maximize the benefit.
Today we have many companies working on innovating and coming up with patents. The idea is to develop a new and innovative idea that drives the next wave of growth and then make it public. The innovator gets the credit and the monetary benefits when others use it. For the business or the industry, this new innovation fuels the growth and development into the next age. Thus the intellectual property laws can help foster competition too.
Today Intellectual property is very important and useful means of making a good sum of money. Great innovations can change fortunes of individuals and companies. This is true especially with patents than other forms of intellectual properties. This is the reason why, in many countries, patent laws have been revised several times to seal any loop holes for both the innovator and the general public to exploit. This further strengthens the laws' ultimate goal of fostering Innovation and Competition.
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