Intellectual Property Protection

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Intellectual property protection has become increasingly popular in the last century. Many factors have probed interest in this area of the law. A few of those factors include musicians seeking protection of their musical talents through use of copyrights, companies seek to protect inventions of advanced production capabilities, companies create trademarks that differentiate their unique goods from competitors, and companies like Coca-Cola protect their undisclosed ingredients for their products through use of trade secrets. These examples are to gain an understanding of how and why intellectual property rights help companies seek advantages in the marketplace. Furthermore, as the world shrinks because of advancements in transportation and computer technology, intellectual property rights become a large part of entrepreneurship and product development. This paper will discuss the interesting and challenging topic of intellectual property protection. The four basic types of intellectual property include copyrights, patents, trademarks and trade secrets; we will discuss the intellectual properties in the order in which they are listed.

COPYRIGHTS:

A copyright prohibits the unauthorized reproduction of creative works such as books, magazines, poems, drawings, paintings, musical compositions, sound recordings, films, and DVDs (Barnes, Dworkin & Richards, 2011). Though many people do file, copyrights do not require any special filing or process other than personal creativity, copyrights take formation automatically. Any creative works created prior to 1978 exist for 75 years. Creative works created after 1978 exist for the life of the author plus an additional seventy (70) years. Copyrights are given to an author/creato...

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...esses expand into foreign countries, many businesses find there are already companies with the same trademark. However, focusing on the domestic market, recovery for trademark infringement must show that (1) it possesses the trademark; (2) the defendant used the mark in commerce; (3) the defendant’s use of the mark was to benefit; and (4) the infringer is confusing customers (Barnes, Dworkin & Richards, 2011). As China expands industrially and technologically, many U.S. and European companies fear trademark infringement. Most large companies have done well at establishing and maintaining international trademark protection (e.g., Coca-Cola, Apple, and McDonalds), whereas small to medium companies struggle with copycat goods and services. Not to get confused, trademark infringement happens domestically with products like Nike footwear and Ralph Lauren clothing.

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