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Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names, and images used in commerce. Intellectual property is divided into two categories, namely industrial property and copyright. Industrial Property consists of patents for inventions, trademarks, industrial designs, and geographical indications. Copyright includes literary works (such as novels, poems, and plays), films, music, artistic works (e.g., drawings, paintings, photographs, and sculptures) and architectural design. Rights related to copyright cover those of performing artists in their performances, producers of phonograms in their recordings, and broadcasters in their radio and television programs. IP is protected in law by, for example, patents, copyright, and trademarks, through which people are enabled to earn recognition or financial benefit from their creation or invention.
Within intellectual property rights, owners, or creators of patents, trademarks or copyrighted works are allowed to benefit from their own work or investment in a creation. To be specific, Article 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights provides for the right to benefit from the protection of moral and material interests resulting from authorship of scientific, literary or artistic productions.
The importance of intellectual property was first recognized in the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property(1883) and the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (1886). Both treaties are administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
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