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Protecting intellectual property rights in software - Assignment Example

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Protecting Intellectual Property Rights in Software Introduction The protection of intellectual property rights in the software market has become increasingly important. Research indicates that the digital age has made illegal duplication of software extremely easy to create and acquire (Banerjee 2003, p.97)…
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Download file to see previous pages This paper examines the types of copying and how they can be protected using the intellectual property rights protections such as patents, copyrights, and trademarks. To begin with, software market loses billions of dollars every year because of illegal copying. This has particularly been witnessed in Qatar where report shows that the country has lost millions of dollars to pirates in the software industry (Banerjee 2003, p.98). The duplication is usually done in two different ways namely software duplication and reverse engineering. Through these two methods, pirates have found it easy to duplicate the original works of others and use the pirated software to enrich themselves at the expense of the original producers (Banerjee 2003, p.98). In fact, presently most software shops in Qatar are full of illegally acquired software. However, as earlier stated, this is a global problem that needs joint effort through legislation of policies to protect the intellectual property rights in the software industry. However, there exist three different methods through which intellectual property rights in the software industry can be protected. These include patents, copyrights, and trademarks. All these methods protect software rights in different ways. A patent is one of the most common intellectual property rights protections. ...
A patent usually provides this protection by granting exclusive monopoly the right to produce, sell, and utilize the invention for twenty years (Banerjee 2003, p.99). Report indicates that the exclusive monopoly for production, use, and sale of the software are usually perceived as a reward for the effort and time spent in coming up with the new invention. Report by Business Software Alliance (2009, p.5) indicated that in countries like the U.S. in order for an inventor to obtain a patent, he or she must make a formal application to the Patent Office and prove that the invention for which protection through patent is being sought is actually new, important, and unique according to Banerjee (2003, p.99). Patents are indeed a very useful tool for protecting software. This is based on the fact it is capable of protecting program features that other methods such as trademarks and copyrights cannot (Banerjee 2003, p.99). This is because a patent can protect features such as an inventor’s ideas, methods, functions, algorithms, and systems personified in the software product. In this regard, it also provides protection to software features such as user-interface features, program language, editing functions, operating system techniques, translation methods, menu arrangements, and compiling techniques among others. Once a patent has been granted for a particular software, it immediately becomes illegal for anyone to produce, use, or sell such patented products without the consent of the owner. Therefore, any contravention amounts to a breach of the law, which usually results into penalties and damages and sometimes may result in incarceration (Arai 2012, p.2). It, therefore, becomes very important for ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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