What is Intellectual Property? Part 1 – Protecting and commercialising your ideas!

IP – stands for Intellectual Property.

What does this mean?

We have a fascinating 3 part interview to help you commercialise your ideas.

Lap, co-founder at nepchin, is going to talk to Brendan Cheong a qualified patent attorney from Indigo IP to find out!

Part 1 – What is Intellectual Property?

Part 2 – What are the major different types of Intellectual Property?

Part 3 – What are the steps to commercialising your Intellectual Property?


Part 1 – What is Intellectual Property?

nepchin: “Hi Brendan welcome to nepchin and thank you for your time.”

Brendan: “Hi Lap, thank you for speaking with me. I am very glad to be here.”

nepchin: “Over the years with more and more technology, we hear the term IP being mentioned more and more on the news. What is IP?”

Brendan: “In the broadest sense IP, or Intellectual Property, is the concept that something you build with your mind should be treated no differently to something physical that you build with your hands. For example, just as you would own the house that you built with your hands, so too should you own the story, painting, inventive concept, or design that you created with your mind. The concept of IP tries to give these intangible and non-physical creations the sense of being ‘property’ and allows them to be sold, traded, rented, stolen, and destroyed just like their tangible and physical counterparts.”

Brendan Cheong - Indigo IP

Brendan Cheong – Indigo IP

nepchin: “So what types of IP exist?”

Brendan: “IP generally exists as Copyright, Patents, Trade Marks, and Designs. These four types of IP are almost globally recognized in most developed countries in one form or another. In Australia, they also have Plant Breeder Rights and Circuit Layout Rights.”

nepchin: “In the business world I guess, we hear companies talking about protecting their IP. What does this mean?”

Brendan: “Companies often go to great lengths and invest large amounts of time and money in the creation and pursuit of IP, whether knowingly or otherwise. This ranges from money spent in marketing and developing a brand, to the research, development, and infrastructure costs required to invent new technologies such as drugs and electronic devices.

When a company has invested such a large proportion of its resources, and taken up so much risk, in the creation and pursuit of these intangible but necessary products, they naturally want to protect and reap the rewards that these products bring. They also want to be able to prevent their competition from freely benefiting from their hard work. Companies achieve this by protecting their IP using one or more of the legal instruments provided by the various forms of IP protection. The various types of IP that we spoke about just before, provide different types of protection for different types of IP.”

nepchin: “Have there been any patents that you have been involved with that are used everyday by us?”

Brendan: “I have been fairly lucky in this respect, and have been able to work on quite a few inventions that most people today have in their homes. Back in the early 2000’s, I was working in Japan for a number of firms who represented clients like Sharp, Panasonic, and Nintendo. I had the opportunity to work on a lot of the Sharp patents that allow us today to have LCD/Plasma screens to have an almost 180 degree viewing angle. I also had the opportunity to work on many of Panasonic’s HD-DVD patents, which unfortunately we don’t see much off today as they lost to Sony’s Blu-Ray technology. And probably two of the coolest inventions I worked on were Nintendo’s Wii controller (you know, the one that can sense your movement) and Sharp’s 3D television technology. I actually remember the large volume of 3D television technology patent work coming across my desk, and me grumbling about what a useless invention it was as who would really want a 3D TV?? Now, close to 10 years later, I just have one thing to say…..Oops!”

nepchin: “apart from IP, we understand you have a keen interest for cars!”

Brendan: “Oh yeah! I love sports cars, and have a particularly soft spot for Japanese sports cars made in the 90’s and early 2000’s. I own a 1995 MR2 myself, which I brought over with me when I came back from Japan. I was lucky enough to get a chance to race my MR2 at the world famous Suzuka circuit in Mie prefecture. It is an amazing circuit, and easily the most technical circuit I’ve ever raced on.”

In Part 2 we do a deep dive into the different types of IP then in Part 3 we look at the steps you can take to commercialise your IP.


One response to “What is Intellectual Property? Part 1 – Protecting and commercialising your ideas!

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