intellectual property

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intellectual property

(legal)
(IP) The ownership of ideas and control over the tangible or virtual representation of those ideas. Use of another person's intellectual property may or may not involve royalty payments or permission, but should always include proper credit to the source.

Intellectual Property

 

a legal concept encompassing copyrights; rights relating to the activities of performing artists, sound recordings, radio and television broadcasts; invention and patent rights; rights to scientific discoveries; rights to industrial models, trademarks, firm names, and commercial designations; and protection from unfair competition; as well as all other rights relating to intellectual activities in industrial, scientific, literary, and artistic fields. The concept came into international use in the 1960’s. In 1967 a convention was signed in Stockholm establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization. The convention went into force in 1970. As of Jan. 1, 1972,25 states had joined the convention, including the USSR, the Ukrainian SSR, the Byelorussian SSR, Bulgaria, Hungary, Rumania, the German Democratic Republic, Czechoslovakia, Great Britain, the Federal Republic of Germany, and the USA.

intellectual property

Intellectual property refers to the proprietary assets of an organization. In the computer field, hardware circuits, software and text are copyrightable. Depending on the situation, the algorithms used within hardware circuits and software may also be patentable, and brand names can be trademarked as long as they are not generic descriptions. However, intellectual property (IP) covers more than just copyrights, patents and trademarks; for example, customer databases, mailing lists, trade secrets and other business information are also included.