Impacts of Technology (U3)

Intellectual Property

Contributors
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Christian Bien

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What is Intellectual Property?
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Note: The following information is solely for educational purposes and is not intended for use as formal legal advice. Please contact an appropriate legal institution for appropriate legal advice. 


Intellectual Property is the proprietary knowledge in the form patents, registered designs, trademarks and/or copyright. Intellectual property in Australia is administered by IP Australia, a government organisation. Intellectual Property gives owners the right to:

  • Exclusively exploit the product for commercial gain;

  • Prevent others from unauthorised copying and distribution; and

  • Gives ground for legal compensation for unauthorised use.

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What are Patents?
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Patents are a legal document, under the Patents Act 1990, that grants the user exclusive commercial rights to exploit a new product or process for commercial gain.

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What are registered designs?

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Registered designs is a legal document, under the Designs Act 2003, that grants the owner exclusive commercial rights to exploit a unique visual appearance of a product.

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What are trademarks?
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Trademarks are a legal document, under the Trade Marks Act 1995, that grants the owner exclusive commercial rights to a keyword or phrase of keywords. Trademarks cannot include common phrases or words.

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What is Copyright?
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Under the Copyright Act 1968, copyright is applied automatically to all products and no legal application and approval is required. Copyright gives the owner exclusive rights for fair dealing, private use and moral rights to a product.

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Components of IP and Their Associated Legislation
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You can read more about intellectual property on the IP Australia website using the link below:

https://www.ipaustralia.gov.au/understanding-ip

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