Intellectual property is the currency of the tech world. The pharmaceutical patent for Lipitor generated over $100 billion in revenue, the copyright for the Harry Potter franchise has generated over $25 billion to date, and the trademarked brands of the world’s largest tech companies now eclipse $100 billion in value. But what makes these intangible assets so valuable?
Through the courses in this specialization, you will learn the differences between the various forms of U.S. intellectual property rights, including patents, copyrights, and trademarks, and their various applications to human innovations. Drawing from that knowledge, you will then work to develop a trademark strategy for a company, analyze a patent document, and address a copyright cease-and-desist request. After completing these hands-on projects, you will have the necessary framework to craft integrated intellectual property strategies tailored to an organization’s core business goals.
Identify the types of intellectual property protection available under U.S. law
Evaluate your options for protecting your creative innovations with copyright law
Analyze and interpret a patent document for a competing product
Develop strategies for protecting and maximizing your brand with a comprehensive trademark strategy
Introduction to Intellectual Property
Intellectual property is the currency of the tech world, with the world’s most valuable intellectual property assets dwarfing the value of their real-world counterparts. Apple’ trademarked brand was valued at over $100 billion as of 2017. J.K. Rowling’s Harry potter franchise has generated over $25 billion to date. But how did the law come to create such enormous value in intangible assets? This course will introduce the various types of U.S. intellectual property: patents, which cover inventions and process innovations; copyright, which protects original works of authorship; and trademarks, which protect a business’ commercial identity as the source of valuable goods and services. You will then explore case studies of how global businesses have used intellectual property law to generate enormous value from these intangible assets.
Copyright law is unique in the greater intellectual property regime, as it protects original expression that is fixed in a tangible medium and is the product of authorship. This course is designed for creative professionals — such as screenwriters, musicians, documentary filmmakers or artists — who want to understand the scope and limits of which works can enjoy U.S. copyright protection. The course will introduce students to the workings of copyright law through an examination of the system’s basic principles, rules, and institutions. Topics will include; the justifications for copyright law, copyrightable subject matter, authorship, the nature and scope of copyright’s exclusive rights, fair use, and remedies for infringement. We will also explore real-world examples of legal battles surrounding copyright law, from the recent litigation over Robin Thicke’s hit song “Blurred Lines” to more peculiar cases such as the infamous “monkey selfie” case. By understanding what copyright does and does not protect, producers of creative expression will be able to protect and maximize the commercial value of their works.
The protections afforded under trademark law have created incredible value in intangible assets, with the value of the world’s most valuable brands such as Amazon, Apple and Google each exceeding $100 billion. But what exactly is trademark law, and how is such enormous value created? This course examines the fundamentals of U.S. trademark law and the ways in which the manufacturers of various products and services can establish and protect their identities and the identities of their products in the marketplace. We will explore the purpose of trademark law, identify the different types of trademarks, including names, designs, logos, and trade dress, and explore strategies for choosing and protecting strong, potentially valuable trademarks. We will also discuss strategies for strengthening descriptive marks, and lay out the steps for filing for federal trademark protection. Finally, we will address how to design an ongoing maintenance strategy to protect, extend, and maximize the value of trademarks, and discuss strategies for responding to possible trademark infringement.
In our modern technologically-based economy, the creation and enforcement of patent rights can make or break a business. With record numbers of patents being issued every year, the stakes for inventors (and, indeed, their lawyers) continue to rise, even as the patent law and its administration faces growing criticism. This course begins with an examination of the fundamental justifications for and creation of U.S. patent rights as well as the relationship between patent law and other “intellectual property” concepts. We will then delve into the details of the U.S. requirements for patentability, and explore the scope of patent rights, again considering how the policies expressed reflect the justifications for patent rights. Then we will look at an actual patent document and analyze the different pieces of an issued patent with a special focus on the importance of patent claims. Finally, we will explore strategies for dealing with patent infringement.
No background knowledge necessary