A copyright establishes ownership f original works f authorship "fixed" in any actual medium f expression. A copyright applies to the expression f an idea, whether published or not. Once an original work is created and fixed, copyright exists.
The idea f the author is not protected when it is just "in his or her head." The author's work must be "fixed" in a tangible medium f expression. For example, it can be handwritten or typed; dictated into a tape recorder; acted out in front f a video recorder; carved into clay, wax or stone; stored on a computer chip; or even woven into fabric.
Once the author's original work is created and fixed, only the author or those the author permit may create other works based on the original. The author alone may authorize distribution, display or performance f his or her work. In order to make money by allowing others to use their work, the author should first consider obtaining copyright registration.
The following examples are items that can be copyright. Examples include: books, poetry, plays, short stories, articles, comic books, musical compositions (words and/or music), audio and video recordings, choreographic works, pantomimes, motion pictures, filmstrips, TV programs, photographs, paintings, drawings, prints, maps, architectural plans, scale models, sculpture, craft works, jewellery designs, fabric designs, computer programs and data-bases.
Firstly, copyrights protect ...
Their works are protected for a minimum period f 50 years after their death (The WTO, 2004). The main purposes f copyrights are to encourage and reward creative work.
This brings us to Industrial Property Law, which as we have said, is divided into 2 categories. The first are is described as the protection f distinctive signs, i.e. Trademarks. This type f protection is aimed at ensuring fair completion, but it also protects the consumer by enabling him to choose between various products. This type f protection differ form copyrights in that it lasts indefinitely (The WTO, 2004).
The second type f industrial property protection can be basically being called patents. This type f protection is used to stimulate the innovation and design f new technology. It basically protects the investments made to develop new technology. Patent protection is usually given in finite terms, mainly about 20 years (The WTO, 2004).
This then brings us to the reason why IPRS are so important in GPE. IPRS protect the investments that firms and nations make in the development f knowledge and technology. This means that if nations and firms can keep others form just using their inventions it can generate enormous wealth for them. Intellectual property rights have thus become a major international issue enjoying much attention form bodies like the WTO and nations owning major patents.
In GPE, one can as always use the three main perspectives f GPE, Liberal, Mercantilist and Structural, to view the IPRS issue.
If we look at the Liberal perspective, we can see that they see property rights as essential to a market economy (Balaam, D.N. & Veseth, M. 2001, p.214). It establishes a link between effort and reward. They believe that