Activities in 17 libraries around the UK. 101 business events delivered. More than 1,000 attendees across all locations. Webcast around the world. Start-up Day, in collaboration with Santander, once again proved to be a huge success.
With a full dayâs worth of events, thereâs a lot of information and words of wisdom to take in from each speaker. Need a recap of what was said? Missed a crucial top tip? Want to relive it again? Or if you missed it, weâve compiled all the videos of the speakers in this post, along with a key take away tip from each...
Top tip from Mintel senior consumer lifestyles analyst, Jack Duckett: Consumer confidence is on a growth trajectory, meaning there are opportunities for brands to grow.
Top tip from Google Digital Garage's Chami Coomasaru: Set yourself goals, think how you want your brand to be perceived and choose the platforms which are appropriate for your business.
Top tip from author and motivational speaker, Anis Qizilbash: Steep in your purpose... your success does not mean another person's loss. The more you make, the bigger impact you create.
Top tip from public speaking coach, Elaine Powell: [Your pitch] is never going to be perfect. Always ask for feedback and take your performance to the next level, and the next level, and the next level. Never give up, it's a journey, not an end destination.
Top tip from author, motivational speaker and business coach, Rasheed Ogunlaru: [Networking] online is the window to your world, meeting people in person is the door.
Top tip from former CEO of Tangle Teezer, Matt Lumb: Donât try and do the 80 hours a week thing. You will burn out. Try and get that balance as you scale.
Top tips from:
Precious Jason, founder of Etieno Skincare: Being in business you have superhero days and you have days which are not so greatâŠ Be kind to yourself.
Rebecca Slater, founder of Shine Creative Solutions: Believe in the idea youâve got and to try and plan out the three most important things you need to get right.
Amy Fleuriot co-founder of Hiro + Wolf and Artisans and Adventurers: Donât expect it to happen overnight. If youâre having to work alongside it, thatâs okâŠ Just keep at it.
Start-up Day 2018 was in collaboration with Santander. To see our events throughout the year, click here.
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 1:16 PM
April 26th 2018 is World Intellectual Property Day. âWhat?â I can hear you asking, why should there be a special day to celebrate Intellectual Property? Well, stop for a minute and take a look around you and I can guarantee that, whether you realise it or not, you will be surrounded by Intellectual Property.
Like the book you are reading (e-book or otherwise!), the iPod or MP3 player you are using to listen to music, the music itself, even the clothes you are wearing, every product or service we use in our day to day lives is the result of innovation. These innovations may be big improvements in function, or small changes in design that alter the way a product looks, either way these improvements will generally be protected by Intellectual Property (IP).
Intellectual property (IP) is like any other piece of property and the owner of the intellectual Property rights controls what if anything happens to those rights including who can benefit from the work or from the investment the rights holder has made into the creation of the product or service.
So how does this affect you and your business?
Whatever business you are engaged in it is very likely that you are using and probably even creating a large amount of IP and, if you want to get the best possible commercial results from its ownership, you need to think about the steps you need to take to protect, manage and indeed enforce your rights.
Protect â register your IP rights where possible.
Manage â keep a record of all the IP you have and any IP that you license from third parties. Ensure renewal fees are paid and licenses are up to date.
Enforce â as the rights holder it is your responsibility to keep an eye out for any IP infringement and to take action to stop it. If you do not intend to enforce your IP rights then perhaps you need to reconsider whether or not you should register your rights.
So letâs look at each form of IP in turn;
The first piece of registrable IP most businesses will have is a trade mark. Trade marks are used to indicate the origin of goods or services. They may be symbols, words, colours or even a combination of these, the choice is yours, but whatever the makeup of your trade mark it needs to be distinct enough to allow consumers to identify your products or services from those of your competitors.
As well as standard trade marks there are several other types of mark such as Collective marks, used to distinguish the goods and/or services of members of a particular association, or Certification marks, given for compliance with defined standards to anyone who is able to certify that their products meet certain standards e.g. ISO/TC 181 Safety of toys.
Trade marking is not to be approached lightly as your trade mark is likely to be one of your most valuable business assets.
If you are a designer then registered designs are probably something you should consider as registered designs protect what it is that makes an item attractive or appealing to its intended market. As the holder of the registered rights you will be assured an exclusive right to the design and thereby protection against unauthorised copying of the design by third parties.
Finally, Patents (this is the biggie!)
A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention. It provides patent rights holders with protection for their invention for a limited period, usually 20 years, subject to the payment of annual renewal fees. Having a patent for your invention means that your invention cannot be made commercially, or distributed or sold without your written permission. You get to decide who may or may not use the invention for the duration the period of protection. However, once the patent expires, after 20 years or if you stop paying the renewal fees, the invention will no longer be protected and will enter the public domain. Basically, it becomes available for anyone to use as they wish.
Probably lesser known, but just as important IP rights are Know How and Trade Secrets. Know How is the practical knowledge of how to do something, to get something done. This sort of knowledge will not necessarily be included in a patent for example, but will be necessary to finish the product, project or job. For examples of Trade Secrets; think of the Coca Cola recipe or the recipe for Irn Bru. These rights are not registrable and need to be protected using contracts and/or confidentiality agreements.
This post just touches on the subject of IP really as a way of highlighting World IP Day and anyone thinking of using IP or making any financially crucial or business crucial decisions based on IP should speak to an IP Attorney. The website of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys can help you locate an attorney in you local area via their website at www.cipa.org.uk . Most IP attorneys offer a free 30 minute one to one advice session.
Alternatively, you can visit your local Business and IP Centre (BIPC) for free, impartial, non legal advice. You will find a list of BIPCâs at https://www.bl.uk/business-and-ip-centrewhere you will also find our workshops, webinars and events you might find of interest.
A final comment; innovation through the years has shaped the world we live in, from the simple hand cast nail invented more than 2000 years ago to the invention of the wheel and the wheel and axle concept, from Gutenbergâs printing press to the telephone, the electric lamp to penicillin, all of these innovations have made our lives easier, better and more interesting and, hopefully, the inventors and innovators of our generation will continue the trend.
Maria Lampert, Intellectual Property Expert
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 4:22 PM
So many small businesses lack IP awareness and understanding, but IP is something of an unsung hero and can prove critical in making or breaking a business.
The Business & IP Centre team are dedicated to helping entrepreneurs and SMEs understand what IP is and why itâs important, what IP they might have created and how they might increase their business success and profitability by protecting and exploiting that IP in the future. Over the years the team have supported thousands of small businesses unlock the value of their IP, and much of the support we provide in the Centre uses case studies and real-life stories to demonstrate how having a handle on your IP gives you a huge commercial advantage.
One such example is Julie Deane OBE, founder of The Cambridge Satchel Company, who has taken her business from the kitchen table and a ÂŁ600 start-up budget to a global success story with a turnover of ÂŁ10 million. Along the way Julie has overcome numerous business challenges including managing designers, manufacturers and overseas distributors, establishing web and physical retail sites around the globe and dealing with thousands of imitator brands. Here, in a free 30 minute podcast with the Intellectual Property Office, Julie lays the truth bare on how sheâs developed strategies to tackle copycat websites, build the brand, keep putting the quality of the product at the heart of the business and âhang on to the passion that made you start the business in the first place.â
Here are our 3 âtop tipsâ for what you need to know when it comes to your Intellectual Property:
Think about trade marks - Is your business name protectable in the countries that you wish to trade? Is it already being used or does the word have another meaning in a different country. Future investors will want to know that you have the rights to trade in the countries that they wish to trade in, and you need to consider this right from the start to give your business the best chance of success.
If youâre creating a âthingâ - Do your research before filing for a patent; is there a market for your product? It is expensive and takes a long time to protect your idea so make sure you do your market research and can be confident that somebody will buy it at the end of the day. If you have paid for your product to be patented and want somebody to manufacture it for you, you also need to ensure you have agreements in place limiting their rights to your initial idea or design.
Founderâs agreement - It is easy to set out a document with your business partner right at the start when setting up your business agreeing things like % of ownership and what should happen in the case of a dispute, or if one of you wish to sell then business and the other one doesnât. Once a dispute has started it is much harder and messier so you need to make sure all parties are clear on this from day one.
You can find further help, support and information on IP in any of the eleven Business & IP Centres up and down the country, including the British Library in Kingâs Cross. Speak to any one of our specialist staff face-to-face, over the phone or by email. You can also log on to our free of charge online workshops to grow your knowledge about IP, and increase your chances of business success.
Julie Deane in the Business & IP Centre
Julie Deane is Entrepreneur in Residence at the British Library and a huge champion for ambitious business owners. She recently gave advice and practical tips on Intellectual Property at the Libraryâs Scale-up Summit alongside Will Butler-Adams, CEO of Brompton Bicycles. Cambridge Satchel and Brompton recently launched a range of colour-matching bags and bikes where the satchel fitted perfectly to the handlebars. This âmade-in-heavenâ brand match caught the attention of the press and delivered extremely high sales. Will and Julie's opening keynote presentation on âGetting your business in the mediaâ was a great success too.
The Cambridge Satchel Company / Brompton Bikes collaboration
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 5:27 PM
Intellectual Property (IP) law can be a minefield, particularly for start-ups and SMEs that either donât have the necessary experience or resources. As a partner to the Business & IP Centre and at our firm of patent and trademark attorneys, London IP, we work with small businesses to sort out IP problems that could have been avoided if the right steps had been taken at the right time. So, to help you avoid any problems with IP we have put together a list of our top five IP mistakes (and how to avoid them).
1. Being scared of IP and ignoring it
There is a myth that IP is an expensive business, and no doubt it can be. However, really you can spend as much as you want to. The UK official fees for registered designs are ÂŁ60, for trademarks fees start at ÂŁ170 and for patents ÂŁ230. Indeed, the official fees to obtain a registered design that covers the whole of the EU are only EUR350!
If you use a patent or trademark attorney to help you then you will need to pay their fees as well, but compared to the cost of many other business expenses such as rents and business rates IP isnât all that expensive. For example, the cost to get a UK patent granted could be anywhere in the region of ÂŁ1500 to ÂŁ4000 spread over five years or so. For a potential twenty year monopoly, and a halving of corporation tax (through the patent box tax scheme), that may be a very worthwhile investment.
Also, itâs worth knowing that IP law is actually quite generous in that it gives you free IP rights that you donât have to do anything to obtain other than create something that is worthy of being deemed to be protected. The most well-known of these rights is copyright, but there are others.
For example, any designs you create may be automatically protected for three years by EU unregistered design right, and for up to 15 years by UK unregistered design right.
That said, unregistered design rights are not as strong as registered rights as unregistered rights (other than the âpassing offâ right for unregistered trademarks) are only infringed by copying, whereas registered rights provide an exclusive right meaning that they can be infringed even if the original work has not been copied.
Thus, it must be recommended that you register your IP rights if possible.
2. Being fooled by scam invoices
The publishing of applicant and inventor names and addresses is essential to the transparency of the IP system as the public needs to know who owns a particular IP right.
Unfortunately, all this information can also be used by criminals, so if you do choose to register any IP rights then it is almost certain that you will receive one or more very official-looking letters from rogue companies that try to scam applicants for patents, trademarks and registered designs.
These scams can simply be an invoice that appears to be from a âpatent officeâ or a âregisterâ. The amounts of money requested vary, but are sometimes quite significant.
The UK Government seems to be generally powerless to stop most these scams as they are often run from overseas
3. Not registering IP at the right time
There is nothing more disheartening than a client describing what sounds to be a marvellous invention with a view to protecting it with a patent and the client commenting âitâs selling really wellâ.
To obtain valid patent protection in most of the world a patent application must be filed before any non-confidential disclosure of an invention.
So before you file a patent application for your invention you canât sell it, put on a crowd-funding website, use it in public, etc., etc.
You can of course talk to third parties in confidence without jeopardizing your chances of obtaining valid patent protection. You may wish to use confidentiality agreements with third parties just so it is clear that everyone understood that the discussions were confidential.
As an aside it is worth noting that all correspondence with patent attorneys is inherently confidential both under common law and their code of professional conduct, so using confidentiality agreements with patent attorneys is quite unnecessary.
Itâs not just patents though; many countries of the world require registered design applications to be filed before any non-confidential disclosure of a design in order to grant valid protection.
Furthermore the trademark system in many ways operates on a first-to-file basis so trademark applications should be filed as early as possible to safeguard future use of the mark and to minimize the chances of expensive and protracted disputes with owners of later-filed conflicting trademarks.
Many trademark disputes would never have occurred if a relevant trademark had been registered when use of the mark started.
In summary, IP should be considered at the very outset of any new venture to try to make sure that patent, trademark and design applications are filed at the appropriate time.
4. Ignoring infringement issues
It should be appreciated that IP is double-edged sword and along with protecting your own IP rights you need to careful not to infringe existing IP.
As mentioned above, registered IP rights provide the owner with the exclusive right to use the IP in the territories covered. This means that you may believe that what you are doing is original but you could be infringing an existing right.
This is the case even if what you are doing is in fact original as registered IP rights can be broader in scope than the thing that they were created to protect.
For example trademark registrations give the owner the right to stop use of identical and similar marks, and registered designs protect against designs with the same âoverall impressionâ.
Often we see clients obsess about protecting âtheirâ idea with a patent, and ignoring the fact that someone else might have thought of it before (perish the thought!).
So before spending money on branding, prototyping and tooling, try to make sure that whatever it is that you are developing isnât going to infringe.
If it does infringe and you canât obtain a license, then unless the IP can somehow be worked around you may need to completely reconsider your project.
5. Not understanding IP ownership issues with commissioned works
If you pay someone to build you a house then you own the house once the work is complete.
IP doesnât work like that unless the âbuilderâ is legally an employee, so problems regularly arise with commissioned works, where the person doing the work is paid money for a project, but is not an employee.
For example, if you commission someone to design a logo or a product, or to write something for your website then (unless there is an agreement in place to the contrary) the person that does the work will own all of the IP rights when the work is done.
Because this is so counterintuitive a lot of disputes about the ownership of intellectual property arise. Indeed, if the law on this were to be changed a lot of IP lawyers would be out of a job!
It is therefore very important to have a clear agreement at the outset of any commissioning process about who will own all the IP once the work is completed and to ensure that, if desired, any IP rights created are legally transferred to the commissioning party.
David Warrilow, Patent & Trademark Attorney London IP, on behalf of the Business & IP Centre
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 11:16 AM
Across the Business & IP Centre National Network and at Newcastle Libraries, home of the Business & IP Centre Newcastle, we believe itâs important for everyone to have a think about copying. We want individuals and businesses to know about their rights to use content and creations that are either in the public domain or under an open license - and to learn more about copyright generally. As we say in our intellectual property workshops make sure you âdonât infringe!â
Thatâs why we are having a bit of an alternative event in Newcastle on 27April. Copying â right or wrong? is a question and answer session with author and activist Cory Doctorow and law lecturer Rebecca Moosavian. Cory Doctorow makes several of his books available for free download on his website (under a Creative Commons license) and Rebecca Moosavianâs research focuses on the appropriateness of applying property rights to culture.
Copy-right or copy-wrong?
We know that to copy something is wrong; itâs been ingrained in us since we were children - and as we grew up copying took the name of âplagiarismâ. Whether your interests are listening to music, appreciating artwork, watching films or TV series, we know copying a song, a film or a TV show without permission is wrong. Every time we watch a DVD we are told that copying the DVD is piracy. Websites are often closed down because of infringement of copyright â the right given to creators or owners of the intellectual property to control what is done with their works and YouTube videos are removed. Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams were more talked about for being found guilty by a US court of copying the late Marvin Gayeâs songs than for their musical talent (the court did not make any comments on the latter).
CC BY-NC-SA Chris Messina (Cropped ; Original picture on Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/factoryjoe/6709784133)
And yet, I copy. Yes. You do too. We all copy. As you can imagine, I would never admit to doing anything illegal and I am certainly not accusing you, of committing any crimes either! That must mean there are cases where copying is right, legal and even encouraged. For example, you buy a CD, then copy it onto your computer, then copy all the tracks again on your MP3 player so you can listen to the album on the go. That is perfectly legal - and it has been very clearly so in the UK since the last changes to copyright law came into force in November 2014. So letâs see what the law does allow.
When it is legal to copy
- Copyright does not last forever - even though new laws can change its duration, copyright has an end â in most cases, count 70 years after the end of the year in which the workâs creator died. What happens to the work after that? It enters the public domain â it belongs to everyone, and anyone can use it, without asking permission.
- Copyright exceptions - the law recognises that there are cases when we do not need to ask for permission to re-use a work. For example, when we make a copy for private use (like with our CD), or we copy and publish an extract for review purposes, or when creating a parody of a famous picture by copying it and adding something humorous to it.
- Open licenses - sometimes the copyright owner will publish their work and tell you it is fine for you to copy it without asking for their permission. The most common way to do this is to use Creative Commons licenses â like the ones on the pictures illustrating this post. CC BY-SA on the image below means âthis work is licensed under a Creative Commons license; you can use it without asking for permission as long as you credit the author and share it under the same licenseâ.
But letâs get back to business. How does all this apply to you as an entrepreneur? When you create something, you are proud of its originality and inventiveness (and rightly so); you would be horrified if someone copied you. In business, entrepreneurs legitimately want to stop others from copying them: if a competitor copies your unique selling point, then how are you going to differentiate yourself in the market? In the Business & IP Centre Network and the other PATLIB centres you can discuss with an adviser how best to protect your creations against copying. We will tell you all about copyright, but also designs, patents and trade marks.
Some large companies, like Dyson, have an impressive intellectual property strategy to protect their ideas. However, other companies like the one behind the Sriracha sauce has a more lenient strategy and encourages others to use their product name in order to generate free advertising and Elon Musk recently announced that other companies are now welcome to copy and use Teslaâs patented technology. Each company needs to think about what is the right approach for their business.
There are also industries that thrive on a type of copying â one that is called âinspirationâ. Think about fashion, music, art, etc. It poses some pertinent questions for business owners; how would you react to another business copying you? Would your reaction be different if you were copied by individuals? Do you think people who copy and share your content on social networks without your permission are right, or wrong? This World Intellectual Property Day take the opportunity to get informed and discuss the role of intellectual property to encourage and control innovation and enterprise in your business.
If you are not able to join us in Newcastle for Copying â right or wrong? on 27 April you can still follow the event on Twitter using #CmnsR4ever and let us know in the comments: what do you think? When is it right to copy? When is it wrong? What should be made legal / illegal in terms of copying?
Aude Charillonon behalf of the Business & IP Centre Newcastle
Aude is Library and Information Officer at the Business & IP Centre Newcastle and leads the Commons are Forever project, which aims to empower participants about our rights to use creative works that are free of copyright, and to in turn share what we create with others.
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 4:49 PM
At the British Library Business & IP Centre we help small business owners, inventors and entrepreneurs understand their intellectual property and how to protect it. An idea, whether itâs an invention, a brand name or a song can be protected with a patent, trade mark, copyright or registered design.
However, there are now many intellectual property frauds or scams operating which could jeopardise your business. We have heard our share of horror stories here in the Business & IP Centre. Just recently the Intellectual Property Office issued a warning about misleading invoices which ask people to pay for services from unofficial sources. If you donât want to be caught out and fall into this trap you need to know about the four common types of fraud that could potentially harm your business.
The most familiar types of intellectual property fraud you may come across include:
1. Database invoices
These claim you need to pay for your patent, trade mark, or design in order to be included on a database or register. However, once youâve registered your patent or registered design with the Intellectual Property Office, there is no need for further payment as itâs included in the registration fee.
2. Fake renewal invoices
You may receive what appears to be an alert that your intellectual property is about to expire, demanding money for it to be renewed. Some unscrupulous companies send invoices earlier than the official intellectual property offices do, and while they will usually pass on the actual renewal fee, they will also charge you a grossly inflated handling fee. If your patent or trade mark attorney is administering renewals for you, just ignore the invoices. If you are handling renewals yourself and you receive an apparent renewal demand, go to the intellectual property office website and check when the official renewal date is and how to pay it.
3. Extending your intellectual property to cover other countries
This can be expensive and you should really consider whether you want to do this from the start. Beware of anyone contacting you exaggerating the ease and necessity of protecting your intellectual property in another country you are not trading in as you only have to extend your intellectual property to cover other countries if you intend to do business there.
4. âInvention promotionâ scams
These are organisations that advertise for invention ideas and offer to develop them into a commercialised product for you, in exchange for a fee. There are reputable companies that can help you with prototyping, patenting and marketing (such as our partners Thames Productions, Bang Creations, and Ideas21). However, there are other companies that will do very little and charge inflated fees for it. We have met customers in the Centre who have spent five-figure sums for âmarket researchâ and âpatent searchâ services that produced limited results compared to what they could have achieved using a business advice centre. Generally, you should be suspicious of any company that suggests you can earn huge amounts of money from an invention concept without putting a lot of effort into the technical development or business planning.
The good news is that the official intellectual property offices around the world are trying to stop fraudulent companies by complaining to marketing regulators like the Advertising Standards Authority here in the UK, and prosecuting them. As a business owner it is important to be aware of existing scams; make sure you read the small-print which can often include a âwe are not officialâ disclaimer, and if you are still unsure contact the Intellectual Property Office or the Business & IP Centre for further assistance.
Philip Eagle on behalf of the Business & IP Centre
Posted by Innovation and Enterprise Team at 10:59 AM
Every business has intellectual property (IP) of some sort. However, when working out how to manage and protect it, it can be hard to know where to start! Below are some of our tips for businesses who want to begin understanding and managing their IP.
1. Understand the different types of intellectual property
There are many different types of intellectual property protection, covering areas from art to inventions. The main ones are copyright, trademarks, patents, and designs, but know-how and trade secrets are also forms of IP commonly found within businesses. Your business may have more than one of these types, so understanding how they work, how theyâre protected and the differences between the different types is essential.
2. IP audit
Conduct a basic IP audit of your business. What IP do you have, is it protected, and how long does that protection last? Do you licence any of your IP to other people? Is there any associated costs/income? Putting this information together in one document will help you to plan your IP strategy, and keep track of your assets.
3. Check your agreements and licences
IP use is often governed by contracts and licences. If you are commissioning work, is IP covered in your agreements with the contractor? If you licence other peopleâs IP, do you keep records of the licences? Employment contracts often also include an IP clause, and you may have non-disclosure agreements to cover trade secrets. An overview of your paperwork will help ensure that you havenât missed anything.
4. Embed IP within your business strategy
IP doesnât exist in isolation from the rest of your business. Whilst IP can be a business asset, applying for protection often has associated costs, so itâs good practice to assess your IP strategy as part of your overall business plan, rather than separately.
Spoiler alert! Unfortunately it was difficult to examine the IP mentions below without revealing a little of the plot, so if you havenât seen the film yet and plan to, look away now.
A couple of weeks ago, I went to see the film Transformers: Age of Extinction. I was interested in the film as Ohyo, one of the Business & IP Centreâs Success Stories, has produced a limited edition of their bottle to tie in with its release. As well as being a very entertaining - almost three hours of robots, aliens, and robot-alien-dinosaurs, the IP geek in me also found much to enjoy in the many mentions of intellectual property within the film.
One of the main characters, Cade Yeager (played by Mark Wahlberg) is pretty much your standard action hero â rugged, wisecracking, good with a gun. But heâs also a struggling inventor, and as such is rather more au fait with the concepts of intellectual property than youâd expect from your average blockbuster protagonist. He jokes about IP, and worries about ownership of his creations.
Discussing an invention with his friend near the beginning of the film, their main debate is over intellectual property rights. And his reaction on using a huge alien gun is âOh, man. I'm so gonna patent this sh*t.â (Itâs doubtful, of course, that he actually could, but then this isnât really a film built on gritty realism.) And itâs not just Yeager: in another scene, during a battle between Bumblebee (an Autobot robot) and Stinger (an apparently new and improved Decepticon copy of his opponent), the former comments ruefully: âI hate these cheap knock-offsâ. (Then he feeds his rivalâs head to a two-headed robotic pterosaur, not an approach weâd normally recommend in regard to IP infringement).
Perhaps the scriptwriters are simply demonstrating a healthy dose of self-awareness, as there is, of course, a huge amount of valuable intellectual property contained within a brand like Transformers, spanning as it does a multitude of media. From the film to the merchandise to the name itself, Transformers will be covered by a variety of IP protection, from trademarks and copyright to patents. Below is the 1985 patent (number 4,516,948) for the Optimus Prime toy, by designer Hiroyuki Obara.
The film also offers some good advice for all would-be inventors out there, in a scene where Cade Yeager confronts a scientist whose creations have had dire repercussions for the world: âYou're an inventor like me, so I know you have a conscience. Don't let your creation take control.â
Whilst, of course, most good inventions have positive outcomes, you can take control of â and learn to protect - your ideas by learning more about intellectual property here at the Business & IP Centre.
This week sees the publication of our new Intellectual property guides.
A brief introduction to patents and patent searching
A brief introduction to trade marks and trade mark searching
A brief introduction to registered designs and registered design searching
A fourth guide, relating to Copyright, is in the pipeline.
These guides provide an overview on intellectual property as a whole and then a bit more in-depth information about the form of intellectual property covered by that particular guide. There is a section in each guide which covers searching and outlines the free databases available via the internet, what they cover and where to find the âHelpâ section on each database.
These guides are designed to serve as a starting point for intellectual property searching and as a follow-on to the more detailed intellectual property guides published by the Intellectual Property Office UK (IPO UK) on their website at www.ipo.gov.uk