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Intellectual Property Research: Getting Started

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What is Intellectual Property Law?

Intellectual Property (IP) broadly refers to the rights to the creations of intellectual activity, primarily in the fields of arts, science, and technology. This research guide provides general information on IP laws in the United States, as well as specialized information on the three core areas of IP: Copyright Laws, Patent Laws, and Trademark Laws. There is also some guidance for beginning research on related topics, such as international IP law, anti-trust, licensing, and trade secrets.

Helpful Terms, Abbreviations, and Definitions

IP = Intellectual Property

WIPO = World Intellectual Property Organization

AIPLA = American Intellectual Property Law Association

TRIPs = Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights

Patent - A right given to an inventor, permitting them to exclusively make, sell, use, and import their invention for a period of time in exchange for publicly disclosing the invention.

Trademark - A sign, design, or expression use to identify the products of a certain source from other similar products by different producers.

Copyright - An exclusive right given to a creator to use their original work for a certain period of time. Copyright does not cover the idea itself, on the manner in which it is expressed.

Trade Secret - Information, technology or technique used by businesses to gain an economic advantage over their competitors and consumers.

Anti-trust - attempts to prevent or control monopolies with the intention of increasing competition among related businesses.

Databases

Below are a list of databases with a broad collection of Intellectual Property Law materials. Most or all of these databases will require users to log on through campus computers or sign-in through the off-campus access option. 

HeinOnline is a great source for legislative history, books, and searching the Official Gazette of the U.S. Patent Office.
Bloomberg Law has laws, regulations, opinions, dockets, treatise, and much more relating to Intellectual Property.
JSTOR has a huge collection of academic articles on hot topics in Intellectual Property Law.

Research & Scholarly Communications Librarian

Barbara Kaplan
Contact:
Research Center L205A
Phone: 850.644.1570

Other Guides

For more information on how to get started researching intellectual property law, check out these helpful guides:

Justia Intellectual Property Center

American Bar Association - Intellectual Property

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.