Intellectual property is a key consideration in day-to-day business decisions. However, many entrepreneurs are not aware of the intellectual property system or the protection it can provide for their inventions, brands, and designs. If left unprotected, a good invention or creation may be lost to larger competitors that are in a better position to commercialize the product or service at a more affordable price, leaving the original inventor without any financial benefit.
Some of the different types of intellectual property include: Patents, Trade-marks, Copyrights, and Industrial Designs. Adequate protection of a company's intellectual property is a crucial step in deterring potential infringement and in turning ideas into business assets with a real market value.
The following web sites contain information to help you learn what you need to know about Intellectual Property:
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) is responsible for most types of Intellectual Property, and has a considerable amount of information available on their web site:
From the CIPO site, it is also possible to download A Guide to Trade-Marks: The Basics in either html or PDF:
The World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) is an excellent source of information on Intellectual Property:
From the WIPO site, two documents are available. A broad introduction to intellectual property is available in WIPO Intellectual Property Handbook: Policy, Law and Use. A summary of intellectual property legislation in member States, as well as contact information, etc., is available in the WIPO Guide to Intellectual Property Worldwide.
The Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC) is Canada's pre-eminent association of professionals who specialize in intellectual property: patents for inventions, trade-marks, copyright, and industrial designs. IPIC's web site is a good source of information on various types of Intellectual Property: