Law for New Zealand Business week 8

Intellectual property as a special class of property right

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Why treat this separately?

The importance of knowledge See New Zealand Motoring News - - Running hot Major issue for business in the future is managing and protecting knowledgewhy?
 Exploitation

is a major income stream  Ephemeral nature
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Intellectual Property- history
Protection is not a recent phenomenon, ever since the advent of the printed word However, means of storage of information and uses of information have expanded exponentially, particularly since:
Industrialisation  computerisation

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What then are the major issues?
Ownership of knowledge Exploitation of knowledge What can be “owned”
 Life?

(cloning, genetic engineering, mental processes)  Inherited and accumulated lore? (traditional medicines, food, processes)
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Have a look at:
Biopiracy and Intellectual Property Rights

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How does New Zealand approach the issue of intellectual property?
Categories of rights and rules under the international agreement on Trade-Related aspects of Intellectual Property rights (TRIPS)
Copyright  Trade marks  Geographical indications  Industrial designs  Patents  Layout designs  Protection of confidential information

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Have a look at the agreement

It also defines the various terms:WTO | intellectual property - overview of TRIPS Ag What do they cover?

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Copyright
Copyright Act 1994- coverage
Protects the form and appearance of certain “works”- not the ideas behind the works  Can be artistic (books, games, articles, movies, tv programmes, computer programs, pictures, sound recordings, music, arrangements)  Can be “industrial” or “commercial” (sets of instructions, computer programs, databases)

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Copyright
Protection
 No

registration or notice is required  Time is limited- depends on the status and nature of the work
 Unpublished

artistic work: 50 years from death  Published artistic work other than typographical arrangement: 50 years from publication  Published typographical work: 25 years  Work used for industrial purpose: 16 years
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How important is copyright?
Growing importance in the computer area Presentation
 New

of information on web site

Zealand Motoring News - - <i>Ask the expert:</i>  Cf this:\\WAKA _STF2_SERVER\STF2\USERS\P\PIWELLS \data\dishonest copyPip Wells.doc

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and
Look and feel of computer programs and images
 Icons,

display, instructions, data processing

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Problem
File sharing- if a person downloads from a site and then “shares” with others, to what extent is that affected by the law relating to intellectual property? Becoming a major issue for holders of copyrighted material particularly musiceg Napster
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Why has this problem become worse with computerisation?
Numbers of potential recipients Problem of information transferdifferent styles of thinking Education/understanding Geographic boundaries become less important

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Goes wider than just an issue over copyright- social issues as well- egs of recent issues

Yahoo Defies Court Ruling Over Nazi Memor New Zealand News - Technology - Employer

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And outside the area of computers
Academic photocopying Recording off DVDs, CDs, tapes and television programmes

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Nb some exemptions
Single copies for research Where subject to royalty agreements Incidental copying (nb product placement!)

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Trademarks
Trademarks Act 1953
 Protects

the commercial value of a trademark against misuse, particularly passing off and under ss9 and 16 Fair Trading Act 1986
 Graphic

representation  Distinguishes products from those of others

Nb. Problem of ensuring that it does not become a generic term- cellophane, aspirin have lost rights to name
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How important is trademark law?
In the computer area- particularly with the growth of the internet
 Issue

of domain name protection

 CNN.com

- Technology - Australia calls for domain na  Globalisation too has had an effect- eg question of Harrods

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Related to the question of brands and branding
Values of brands cannot be overstatedSee BusinessWeek Online: 2002 Global Brand Scoreboard

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Patent
Patents Act 1953
 Covers

“inventions”- question of how broadly this can be defined  Provides a statutory monopoly for 20 years  Must be registered- first registered, first right (subject to questions of fraud and sabotage)  Can be New Zealand or world-wide
 Example:

xerox
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Geographical Indications
Geographical Indications Act 1994 (not yet in force)
 Idea

that regions are perceived as connected to products- wines  WTO MEMBERS DIVIDED OVER GEOGRAPHICAL I

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Industrial designs
Copyright Act and Designs Act 1953 Designs Act relates to aesthetics
 Retro

toaster  Ergonomic furniture

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Layout Designs
Layout Designs Act 1994 Principally computers- integrated circuits

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Protection of confidential information
Confidentiality and trade secrets Employees and competitors Legal action may follow breach- Breach of Confidence (Coca Cola recipe) Question: how do you protect information?
Contracts in Restraint of Trade  Employment contracts  Profit-sharing agreement  Chinese walls  see Compaq.com - Code of Conduct

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How can you take advantage of rights?
Sale Licensing Franchise Leasing Claim royalties after the event- question of success- http://www.usatoday .com/tech/news/2002/02/07/patent-suit. htm
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What sort of legal remedies are available?
Depends on what sort of right is being claimed Also may take actions in passing off or under the Fair Trading Act (misleading or deceptive conduct, false statements) Problems: can you take on someone large and international and win??? (imagine suing Microsoft for example)
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But hang on-why should you protect knowledge?
Is it not a public good anyway (nb the matter of traditional knowledge)? Is it something that should be in the private preserve?
UofT G8 Information Centre: G8 Online Lectures 2002  Other perspective- knowledge cf information

Knowledge is a subset, situation specific, of information  Knowledge is specific and related to discipline  Knowledge related to awareness and education  Knowledge related to power

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Summary
Intellectual property is increasingly important in this technological age Theoretically there is no limit to knowledge It is necessary for society to encourage innovation through new applications of knowledge The legal regime is designed to encourage that innovation but also allow its dissemination – some debate over whether this is achieved
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