Patents are types of intellectual properties. Intellectual properties or IPs are works, ideas, or creation made by human intellect. Nowadays, IPs are known to be the most significant asset any business could ever have. Though intellectual properties come off as intangible, they still guarantee greater success and higher income as compared to any other tangible asset.
At present time, businesses have become highly competent more than ever. As a result, intellectual properties now also play an essential role in keeping up with today’s [business and technology] trends; hence, the need to utilize and prioritize it.
Philippine patent attorneys believe that it’s crucial for tech startups to know each of their intellectual properties. Losing track or record of these can lead to their company’s early downfall. To know more about how you can take care of your IPs, specifically your patents, we’ve listed a few steps on creating a patent strategy to help your startup thrive in the industry:
What are Patents?
A patent is a type of intellectual property. While IPs are intangible assets, patents protect an even more intangible concept, which are ideas or invention. A patent is granted on an inventor or creator in exchange for the design or invention’s public exposure and utilization. However, before anything else, the idea or invention at hand must first be able to pass all three of the criteria laid out before being granted a legitimate right or protection.
Criteria for Patents
As mentioned, a criterion is laid out before an intellectual property, idea, or invention is acknowledged as a legitimate patent. The criteria are as follows:
The first stage is novelty. On this phase, the inventor of the intellectual property at hand must be able to verify or prove that his idea is unique, and that no other idea out in the world exists. If you pass the first stage, then you’re bound for the next one.
The second stage is the inventiveness. Your idea or invention must be proven to work according to how you intend it to work. In other words, your supposed method or process should help you arrive in an expected product or result. Failure to prove an idea or invention’s inventiveness can lead to losing your chance in securing patency.
Ability to be Applied in an Industrial Setting
Lastly, your proposed idea or invention should literally be for the “common good.” Once you’ve passed the first two stages, your concept or design is now bound for a “test run” if it can be used in an industrial setting, which, in turn, can somehow contribute to the growth and development of the economy. After passing all three of the criteria laid out, then your idea is now granted with patent rights and protection. However, it’s important to note that filing for patency must first be within your own home country first before anywhere else.
Now that you know what a patent is, it’s time to think of a series of strategies to help you protect these intellectual properties, and, possibly contribute in generating profit and achieving greater success in your startup business.
Protect Your Idea
You might be wondering, “What for is this ‘protection’ if I’m already in the process of registering my IPs for patency?”
Well, getting a patent is not that easy. It may take some time, so while you wait for an official decision, ruling, or approval, might as well protect your ideas and inventions at all costs. This is to prevent any data breach, IP infringement, and other conflicts or disputes. The next few bullets are to emphasize on how you can specifically protect your ideas and create a patent strategy:
Document Your Idea
In simpler terms, make the intangible tangible. When thinking of ideas and formulating inventions, make sure to always document all accounts in forms of sketches and drawing, written instructions or manuals, and so much more. Documenting all these things with complete details will help you prove your ownership over the specific idea at hand. If other parties try to claim ownership over your IP, what evidence do you have to prove that you’re the rightful owner? None. It’s just your word against them and nothing else. So, make sure to file all documents and accounts of your idea so as to avoid problems and conflict, should there be any.
Hold Closed-Door Meetings
When sharing your ideas to important point persons in the company, make sure to hold closed-door meetings to prevent the idea or invention from leaking. Any leakage only means your intellectual property gets more prone to breaching, infringement, or stealing. As much as possible, try to keep the circle small when disclosing important information such as future company concepts and designs.
Keep Your Ideas to Yourself
If meetings are unnecessary, then might as well keep all your ideas to yourself. It’s better to be safe than sorry. If anything, you can just try to wait for the right time when you can finally disclose everything out in the open, once your patency has been reviewed and passed on for approval. Until then, try to keep everything to yourself to avoid losing credit for all of your hard work.
Intellectual properties are a product of the human intellect, and it’s not something to be taken lightly, or just to be given away. Better give credit where credit is due by protecting your [hard] works through tips and strategies mentioned above. As IPs have now become a significant asset for most businesses today, it wouldn’t hurt to be extra careful or cautious over adding security to guarantee greater success and higher income.