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- Exodus 20:15

It is that branch of law that protects ideas. Intellectual Property law deals with the rules for
securing and enforcing legal rights to inventions, designs, and artistic works. Just as the
law protects ownership of personal property and real estate, so too does it protect the
exclusive control of intangible assets. The purpose is to give incentive for people to
develop creative works that can benefit society, ensuring they can profit from their works
without fear of misappropriation.
The Constitution explicitly recognized the exclusive rights of scientists, inventors, artists,
and other gifted citizens to their intellectual property and creations, particularly when
beneficial to the people, for such period as may be provided by law. 1
Under the Civil Code, ownership is acquired through (1) The author with regard to his
literary, dramatic, historical, legal, philosophical, scientific or other work; (2) The
composer; as to his musical composition; (3) The painter, sculptor, or other artist, with
respect to the product of his art; (4) The scientist or technologist or any other person with
regard to his discovery or invention.2
In addition, the creator or author of the works are protected by the law 3 and special laws.4
The 3 main types of Intellectual Property Law mainly recognized in our country are; a)
Trademark, b) Copyright, c) Patent.

1 CONST. (1987) art. XIV, sec. 13

2 NCC. art. 721

3 NCC art. 722-723

4 NCC art. 724

Trademark is a recognizable sign, design, or expression which identifies products or

services of a particular source from those of others, although trademarks used to identify
services are usually called service marks.5
A trademark is a distinctive mark of authenticity which the merchandise of a particular
producer or manufacturer maybe distinguished of that of the others, and its sole function
is to designate distinctively the origin of the products to which it is attached. (e.g. Adidas,
Nike Rolex, Toyota, Carrier, Samsung, Pertua)6
Copyright is a legal concept that gives the creator of an original work exclusive rights to it
usually for a limited period of time at its most general. It is literally the right to copy but
also it gives the copyright holder the right to be credited for the work and determine who
may adapt, to benefit from it financially, and other related rights.7
Patent is a set of exclusive rights granted by a state to a inventor or his assignee for a fixed
period of time in exchange of a disclosure of an invention. While it functions to protect the
inventor, the ultimate goal of the patent system is to bring new designs and technologies to
the public domain through disclosure.8
Trademark, copyright and patents are different intellectual property rights that cannot be
interchanged with one another. A trademark is any visible sign capable of distinguishing
the goods (trademark) or services (service mark) of an enterprise and shall include a
stamped or marked container of goods. In relation thereto, a trade name means the name
or designation identifying or distinguishing an enterprise. Meanwhile, the scope of a
copyright is confined to literary and artistic works which are original intellectual creations in
the literary and artistic domain protected from the moment of their creation. Patentable
inventions, on the other hand, refer to any technical solution of a problem in any field of
human activity which is new, involves an inventive step and is industrially applicable. 9

5 NCC art. 520

6 See

7 See

8 See

9 Kho vs. Court of Appeals, 379 SCRA 410, G.R. No. 115758 March 19, 2002

What is the Rationale for Intellectual Property: a) It is the natural right of a person to own
his creation. It is just right to give credit where credit is due, b) Moral rationale - It is not
right to steal, c) Economic incentive rationale the prospect of reward for the creator or
inventor, d) To increase competition, e) Social benefit rationale (for the benefit of the
Intellectual property right matters, Because you own your creation or invention even if it is
intangible asset. Intangible assets are as equally important and valuable as tangible
assets, It fetches you money, fame and recognition, It is a key business asset, Intellectual
Property is used for marketing goods and services if in the form of trademark or service
mark. If you want to market your good or service you give it an indication or a name so
consumers can identify your goods, products and services. Consumers can associate
value and quality with your product, It spurs the economy. It gives the economy a boost, It
incentivizes the creator or the inventor by giving him the rewards in monetary value.
If the creator does not get these, he would not want to create again.
Intellectual property, however, can be in conflict with public access. It grants a form of
monopoly that restricts peoples access to something. Thus, IP Law must be balanced with
a strong competition law.
The point of granting Intellectual property rights are, IP is an incentive system designed
to encourage individuals to create, to invent, to innovate, BUT the higher purpose of IP is
to improve the lives of the public. It operates on the assumption that everyone would
benefit from the creation of more works. Thus, IP is granted under the beneficial to the
people clause of the Constitution, IP, however, can be in conflict with public access. It
grants a form of monopoly that restricts peoples access to something. Thus, IP Law must
be balanced with a strong competition law.


To effectively strengthen and protect the rights of the creator and the author of their
works, the congress enacted a special law to extend reciprocal rights to nationals of the
Philippines by law and to extend the protection offered by any provision or convention in
the international community.10
Berne Convention: The Berne Convention, adopted in 1886, deals with the protection of
works and the rights of their authors. It provides creators such as authors, musicians,
poets, painters etc. with the means to control how their works are used, by whom, and on
what terms. It is based on three basic principles and contains a series of provisions
determining the minimum protection to be granted, as well as special provisions available
to developing countries that want to make use of them. 11

10 Rep. Act 8293

The Paris Convention, adopted in 1883, applies to industrial property in the widest sense,
including patents, trademarks, industrial designs, utility models, service marks, trade
names, geographical indications and the repression of unfair competition. This
international agreement was the first major step taken to help creators ensure that their
intellectual works were protected in other countries.12
The Rome Convention secures protection in performances for performers, in phonograms
for producers of phonograms and in broadcasts for broadcasting organizations. WIPO is
responsible for the administration of the convention jointly with the International Labour
Organization (ILO) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization (UNESCO).13
Since ownership is vests under the creator or author of the idea, the law recognizes the
right of the latter. As such, infringement of any kind will be apprehended by the law. 14
intellectual property rights are widely violated specially in Southeast asian countries. 15

11 See

12 See

13 See

14 Rep. Act 8293, sec. 10.2

15 See


Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is composed of 10 countries with diverse

economic and social conditions. Nonetheless, these countries are welded together by a
common and shared goal that faster growth is possible through accelerated liberalization
in trade and investments. The protection of physical and intellectual property rights (IPR)
will help achieve this goal.
The Property Rights Alliance (PRA) in Washington DC, USA, produces the annual
International Property Rights Index (IPRI) report. This paper covers six out of the 10
member-countries of the ASEAN. IPRI scores are composite for a countrys performance in
three areas: (a) legal and political environment, (b) physical property rights, and (c)
intellectual property rights.
According to their study, as of 2015, Singapore has the lowest violation of Intellectual
Property Law due to their iron hand law which penalizes violators of such Law. Sadly,
Philippines is the 3rd country which usually violates the intellectual property law followed
by Indonesia and lastly, Vietnam.16
One of the most noticeable fact is that, with more developed country like Singapore, have
exerted pressure and effort to ensure intellectual property rights protection. Unlike in
other countries who are not yet fully developed are more lenient in the implementation of
Intellectual Property Law resulting to infringement of rights of the creators or authors of
the said product.17

16 See

17 Id.

According to World Intellectual Property Office, economic growth plays a major part when
it comes to the implementation of Intellectual Property Law. 18
What we can therefore conclude in terms of the implementation of Intellectual Property
Law is that, Developed countries have been keen on protecting their IPR; however, as it is a
fairly new
concept to developing and less-developed countries and regions, the relevant IPR policies
still under development and/or at an early implementation stage. 19
It is obviously difficult and a time consuming process for developing countries with
insufficient administrative resources to create the rather sophisticated administration that
an intellectual property rights system requires. This concerns first of all IP offices that are
usually part of the government and as such pay wages that cannot compete with the
private sector. Under the circumstances, it is difficult to attract technically qualified
personnel. There are further concerns about the slow development of the IP profession in
general and of the patent attorney profession in particular. In those countries with more
developed IP systems, specialized training programs for the profession are now becoming
available. We can therefore conclude that protecting Intellectual Property Law are not easy
to implement especially when a country is limited as to its resources for the
implementation of said law. Hence, we should also consider the facts and circumstances
surrounding in southeast asian countries in terms of their implementation of Intellectual
Property Law.20
After all, as the saying goes, Dont Judge a book with its cover.

18 See

19 See

20 See

Legal Research and Thesis Writing
Makel Deric Manabo
3rd Year JD - A