Sunday, January 2, 2011

imitation is the best form of flattery

I believe that all the ideas that has ever been thought of has already been sent out into the universe and it is the constant quest for change that has forced us to recycle trends and fads. This is why there is a premium given to ideas which are claimed by those who first thought of it, or at least those who first lined up to apply for an intellectual property registration.

Intellectual property law was established to protect the interests of those who have stumbled upon a good idea and are planning to cash in on it. Unfortunately, those who originally create the idea are not the ones who apply for the patent. Take nata de coco for example. Nata de coco has been around since (or waaay before) I was a child. It is sold in streets by toothless men with iceboxes full of ice candy and chilled nata de coco. But who was he to think of going up to an office to apply for the idea of making nata de coco or to claim that the process of making it should be named after him? A nobody. In fact, nobody in the Philippines thought of getting a patent for the filipino treat. It was the Japanese who applied for a patent and were thankfully decent enough to keep the name. What about ylang ylang, flower of which the perfume we have used since our pre-colonial period? Yves Saint Laurent, a French company, beat us to the 400 year punch and patented the scent but not the name.

Is there something wrong with this picture? Definitely.

I think that its the lack of information dissemination about the law and its effects that restricts our creativity and intelligence to be classified as legally ours. We should be known as the makers of these things rather than just those who thought of it first.

addendum:just this Christmas i bought myself a BLUEberry. it is a chinese version of the blackberry minus BBM and all other stuff. the BLUEberry however has a TV tuner, neat :)

by Vann dela Cruz entry # 6

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