The current copyright system¶
- published content¶
Any result of an intellectual work that is intentionally published as text, picture, sound, movie, software source code or any other form of information storage.
The term intellectual property appeared first in the 19th century and became common in the majority of the world only in the late 20th century.
- intellectual property¶
Intangible creations of the human intellect that are legally recognized as a private property. (inspired by Wikipedia)
The term encompasses:
artistic works like literature, pictures, music and movies and more subtle things like designs, slogans, symbols.
scientific works like discoveries, inventions, software, methodologies, industrial standards.
identities, i.e. legal persons as such with their name and their reputation.
Intellectual property: the genial idea to turn published content into a tradable resource. The most profitable resource in the world because it is unlimited (unlike material resources). Intellectual property is the aorta of every greedy giant in the digital era.
But intellectual property gets more and more complex:
Some corporations have managed to trademark individual colors (Can a corporation “own” a color?)
Regulating intellectual property requires a huge arsenal of laws and institutions.
The European Union Intellectual Property Office (euipo.europa.eu).