POWER OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN THE COURSE OF COVID-19 PANDEMIC

ABSTRACT

The deadly corona virus is disturbing each & every phase of our daily lives. Apart from the health jeopardy, it has been unsettling our economic and social lifestyle.  Amid this situation, Intellectual Property is that one thing which stays more powerful and it’s essential for us to realize this as it remains the same irrespective of any jurisdiction. We all know that Intellectual property protection is the key to nurturing modernization.

Intellectual Property (IP) incorporates intangible creations of the human intellect and the law dealing with such property i.e. Intellectual Property Law manages the principles for implementing lawful rights to inventions, designs, and artistic works. There is right now no demonstrated successful direct treatment for COVID-19 and the financial intensity of individuals is falling at an incredible pace, right use and security of one’s Intellectual Property can ease in this circumstance. The businesses and researchers will not get recognition for their ideas, inventions if they’re not protected and it will only lead to less development which the nation is not ready to afford, especially in these tough times.

In this article, we are going to talk about the role of IP in the current situation. We will touch upon why IP protection is important, how can one benefit from their IP assets and the key to have an edge.

WHAT IS INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND IT’S RIGHTS?

The term Intellectual Property applies to scholarly creativity of  a  creator, such  as  invention, music,  literature,  symbols,  names,  designs,  images  and even ideas. Intellectual Property is an immaterial resource of an individual. It is a lawful idea which alludes to manifestations of the mind for which exclusive rights are recognized. Intellectual property, similar to some other type of ordinary types of property, is an asset. The proprietor/owner has the option to forestall the unapproved use or sale of this property. Since Intellectual Property is elusive, that is, it can’t be characterized or distinguished by its own physical parameters; in this manner, the intellectual property must be communicated in some perceptible manner for empowering it to be ensured.

Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are the lawfully recognized exclusive rights to manifestations of the brain. Under these rights, the intellectual property can be purchased, sold, authorized or traded, similar to some other type of a conventional property. Under intellectual property law, proprietors are allowed certain exclusive rights to an assortment of immaterial resources, for example, music, literary, and artistic works; discoveries and inventions; words, phrases, symbols and designs. These laws ensure the lawful privileges of creators and owners, in relation to intellectual creativity. IPR is essential for better identification, planning, commercialization, rendering and insurance of the invention or creativity. The goal of intellectual property law is to allow incentives to the creator of the work. Creative movement should bring about advancement, which further supports technological advancement, industrial development and economic welfare.

INTELLUCTUAL PROPERTY AND THE DEADLY VIRUS

On January 30, 2020 the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared COVID-19 outbreak as Public Health Emergency of International Concern. This is indeed a tough time for the world and the number of cases and deaths may climb even higher, said by the Director-General of the WHO. The dreadful corona virus isn’t just influencing every single part of our day to day lives but additionally causing serious health issues and is exceptionally disturbing our social and economic way of life.

In the midst of this circumstance, there’s one thing which remains all the more impressive and that is Intellectual Property, and it’s imperative for us to acknowledge the fact. No need to mention, it remains the same irrespective of any jurisdiction. We as a whole should realize that Intellectual Property insurance is extremely vital to cultivating the development. Without insurance of innovative ideas, the businesses and researchers would not get any return on investment on their creations, which would lead to disappointment and demotivation of spirits and will ultimately lead to less innovative work, which we can’t bear, especially in this pandemic.

Further in this article, we are going to briefly discuss the job of Intellectual Property in the current circumstance. We will address why IP protection is significant, how might one profit by their IP resources and the way to have an edge.

NEED FOR PROTECTING INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

  • Resolution for Inter-Sectoral Expansion

Without a doubt, Corona virus is wrecking economies everywhere throughout the world. Since there is no such thought of to what extent the circumstance endures, the organizations are attempting to get their hands on something practical that may assist them with outshining in the current circumstance. With a similar point of view, they are dashing towards adopting or developing solutions in an industry that is lined up with the current circumstance. The arrangements can be of their own very space or can have a place with different ones. The only key factor is that it must be lined up with the current circumstance, which implies that those businesses which are directly contributing towards the economy during lockdown period because of the corona virus pandemic. For instance, the enterprises which are right now on a high are: medical, entertainment, online gaming, video conferencing, social media, and so forth. Along these lines, a positive move toward embracing the arrangements from these businesses is evident. Consequently, this may lead to an increase in possibility of infringement accusations. This makes protecting IP crucial.

  • Slipshod Frame of mind –

The organizations of these rising ventures (medical, entertainment, online gaming, video conferencing, social media, etc.) will attempt to have an edge over their rivals. The organizations embracing cross-industry arrangements will likewise concentrate on making their item/ platform exceptional so that it could stand out in the crowd.

It may be a mentality at times that IP proprietors won’t pay regard in this pandemic circumstance; and with this attitude, they may surge towards propelling their product or feature. This can again cause high number of IP cases. For instance, Mahindra & Mahindra has recently been accused of stealing a low cost ventilator technology by a PGIMER specialist. This again approves the way that IP security is significant.

OPPORTUNITIES OPEN BY HAVING IP ASSETS

  • IP can be used as an effective tool to fight against financial discomforts-

The lockdown has halted most of the industry operations. But, no matter what the situation is, they got their IP assets’ back. Companies can utilize their intangible assets by:

  1. Earning royalties by licensing it.
  2. Making money by selling it.
  3. Exploiting it through strategic alliances.
  4. Suing Potential Infringers.

All in all, the power of one’s IP asset still has the potential to make one’s business more powerful.

  • Open access to IP assets owned by others can give companies a platform to work out solutions to battle COVID-19:

The Open COVID Pledge is an activity which incorporates a group of techies such as, Microsoft, Facebook, IBM, Amazon, Sandia National Laboratories and Hewlett Packard. They have sworn free utilization of their protected innovation (IP) to battle COVID-19 during the pandemic. Aspiring companies may approach to take advantage of this access, and quicken the turn of development and deployment of diagnostics, antibodies, therapeutics, clinical hardware and programming arrangements in this urgent public health crisis. Other tech organizations and scholastic and research institutions are additionally joining this growing list.

WHY IP ASSESSMENT IS MANDATORY?

Of the considerable number of cases examined over, the key which can assist you with having an edge over every other person is to get IP assessed. Let’s see how IP assessment helps in all the above cases:

While propelling new product/feature, complete a speedy IP check, to dodge potential encroachments.

While suing, organizations should know the specific purpose of encroachment of a product or invalidation of a patent. Without IP appraisal, the equivalent can hit in reverse and can be dangerous.

While out-licensing your Intellectual Property, you should, consistently, go for a quality check of the advantages you have, to get the maximum benefit.

Now when the organizations are not reveled into manufacturing practices, it’s high and well-suited chance to use this chance to sort their IP portfolio by means of valuation. This incorporates arranging your IP resources into star patents, core/non-core patents, and so on.

If you are considering going into another area, get a diagram of the spaces which have not been chipped away at yet. This blank area examination will give you the idea for an underlying kick to your Research & Development practices.

While building a business system, become more acquainted with what your rivals are doing. An outline of your rivals’ IP portfolio may demonstrate an incredible lead for you to understand your powerless and solid spots.

In this way, it’s not deniable that IP can be utilized as a shield to beat bankruptcy and prosecution; and a decoration to stand-apart among the business players. The craftsmanship is, simply, to realize how to exploit it suitably!

CONCLUSION

Intellectual Property refers to intellectual creativity of an individual, for example, invention, music, literature, symbols, names, designs, images and even ideas. It is an immaterial asset of an individual. It is legally recognized which implies to the manifestations of mind for which exclusive rights are recognized.

Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) provides exclusive rights to such manifestations. Under these laws, the intellectual property can be purchased, sold, licensed or traded, similar to some other type of a materialistic property. Under these laws, proprietors are allowed some exclusive rights to a range of immaterial resources which ensure the lawful liberties of creators and owners, in relation to intellectual creativity. To allow certain incentives to the creator of the work is the goal of Intellectual Property law.

In these circumstances, Intellectual Property remains all the more impressive as it remains the same irrespective of any jurisdiction. Intellectual Property insurance is extremely fundamental to refine the development. Not having insured innovative ideas, will not allow the businesses and researchers to get any return on investment on their creations, which would lead to dissatisfaction and demotivation that will ultimately lead to less innovative work, which we can’t afford, especially in this pandemic.

REFERENCES

  1. https://www.mondaq.com/india/patent/949744/contribution-of-ipr-regimes-in-fight-against-covid-19-pandemic-
  2. https://www.lexorbis.com/cues-to-indian-patent-office-for-responding-against-covid-19/
  3. https://www.wipo.int/about-wipo/en/dgo/news/2020/news_0025.html

Article written by Sparsh Agarwal, Intern, H.K. Law Offices

Published by meghachaturvedi

Associate Partner, H.K. Law Offices

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