IP Rights and their Importance in the Creative Industries.

By Nathan Bayne


Discussion of IP rights, the benefits of having protection, prevention of being able to create something similar to someone elses idea/product and also the effects of not having protection on IP. This will all be covered throughout this post.

What is IP?


IP is an acronym for Intellectual Property. IP is the ownership of ideas or concepts that you, yes you, personally have created or have thought of. In order to protect your IP you can either trademark, patent or copyright it. These three methods provide protection on your ideas in different ways. Depending on what kind of cover you need and what you would like to use your idea for, you would need to consider what route is best to take in order to protect it.



An example of an intellectual property act is the Copyright Designs & Patents Act 1998. This act is the current UK copyright law. It gives creators such as music artists, creators etc the ability to control how their work is used by others. The rights for this law are the following listed below:

These acts can’t occur without permission from the owner. The owner of BSM plans on breaking one of these laws because within the brief it states “You are asked to base the design and functionality of the new site on this other website. Jim reckons there is nothing to prevent you doing this as the competitor’s website is targeting a different market and operating in another country.” This means that Jim doesn’t have a clear understanding of the UK’s copyright laws. What he is planning on doing is completely against the law. A way to avoid this from happening would be by simply asking the competitor if they would allow us to copy the design that they have for the BSM website. If they didn’t give consent, then this plan can’t be followed through, and we would need to create a completely different design for the site. By doing this, It would prevent any laws from being broken.

What is a Patent?


A patent for an invention is granted by the government to give the inventor the rights to prevent any other competitors from copying their design and selling it. A patent is only for protecting your product for a limited amount of time. Depending on the license you get, it can protect your creation for up to twenty years. When the twenty years have passed, you would need to re-apply to get it granted for another set amount of time. For your invention to patentable, it must be something new that the public has never made anything like before.



A second intellectual property act is the Trade Marks Act 1994. This act is a law that is the current trademarks law within the UK.

A trademark is a way for a company or individual to distinguish themselves from another. In the world of business, a trademark is something that identifies the company or individual. This trademark can’t be copied by anyone else and is therefore unique to the owner. By having a trademark, it prevents competitors from using your identity to help boost their company. If you didn’t have your logo, for example, as a trademark and a competitor decided to use it for their own use, it could affect your own company. If the company or person that has copied the trademark has a bad reputation, it can confuse people, and whenever they see the brand, they might not want to buy anything from them. If a company has a registered trademark, it is easy for them to defend in court against to people who copied it. If a company has an unregistered trademark, it is a bit more challenging to win the case in court. The court would have to consider whether there are any similarities in which both companies are selling or what service they’re providing that could possibly cause confusion for customers between the two. This is why it is important for any company or individual always to register their trademark to prevent any complications.

Does IP stifle creativity in the creative industries?


When you think of the number of products that have been created, such as games, it is challenging to think of anything different. There has been that much produced to the point that it makes it harder than ever before to create unique products. If anything, I feel that IP makes everyone more creative than they previously would be without IP. The reason for this being is that it forces people to think out of the box and create something unique that no one else has ever created it. It allows your mind to go wild because products must be different than products with IP.

How important is IP within the Creative Industries?


IP is vital within the creative industries. You can never forget that people working in the creative industries need to make a living. It may be a side hobby for some, but for most people, it is their full-time job. If you create something that has never been made before, if you started selling it without protection, it would be copied by competitors straight away. It would then affect the amount of sales you make. This is why you should always protect new work you create that is different from anything else available. It helps maximise the amount of money that you make from your creation.

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