Intellectual property (IP) promotes innovation. The limited right to exclude others from copying patented inventions, copyrighted original works of authorship, and trademarked brands and logos encourages innovators to invest their time and money. IP appeals to our sense of fairness by discouraging or preventing counterfeiting, passing off, and other harmful takings of the fruits of investments in research, development, creativity and innovation, and is leveraged by entrepreneurs seeking start-up capital. Unfortunately, the general public lacks a true understanding of how IP fuels our innovation economy. Today, IP practitioners are bombarded with so many free newsletters about IP that we simply cannot read them all—it is no longer a function of getting access to information, but which sources of information are the best use of one’s time. The same is true for the general public, which is increasingly exposed to references about IP in social and news media, advertising, and other public channels. Unfortunately, those references to IP are not always accurate and often require explanation.
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