Quiz 8: Intellectual Property Rights


Facts: The person R is a food buyer for the company OCF. She decides to conduct her own business named RK. She makes an offer to the organic supplier to buy their harvest and offers the customer to sell the product at less price than the ex-employer. Intellectual property rights: It refers to the right of the company to have a monopoly to use its own ideas, plans, or any other intangible assets. It includes rights such as copyright, trademark, patents and trade secrets. These rights encourage innovations as it reduces the fear that the competitors may steal the idea. Trade secret: It refers to the information of commercial value such as plans, customer lists, and research and development. It may also include marketing methods, pricing information, production techniques which make an individual company unique. Outcome: The person R has not violated any intellectual property rights because she has not revealed any business information such as the pricing method or marketing method which will negatively affect the organic business or reduces the economic advantage of the business over the competitors. She has just offered the customer to sell her products at less price. Therefore, she has not violated any rights.

The H receives protection as a trade dress. Images and overall appearance of a product are referred as trade dress. It is a comprehensive concept and can contain either packaging of the product, all or part of its image, or overall impression. In cases concerning infringement of trade dress, as in infringement of trade mark cases, key concern is whether consumers are expected to be confused by the apparently infringing use.

Copyright infringement Copyright infringement basically refers to work protected by the copyright law which is being utilized without any prior permission from the holder of the right. Thus when an original idea is transformed or copied into another product then it is termed as copy right infringement. The copied product need not be the same replica of the original but may contain the original idea to an extent in the copied product In this case, the student has taken Xerox copies of the published journal article which could help her in writing the term paper. Since such act is equivalent to copying without permission. However, apart from taking copies of the journal, the student is also going to use the content in the article pertaining to the term paper. Therefore the term paper will contain at least some points of the research article as a result of which copy right violation takes place. Hence it is ascertained that situation 'a' best represent copyright infringement.

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