There are many forms of intellectual property. Examples include a musician's song, an artist's painting and a photographer's picture. If a photographer's picture is placed on the Web, what is the mechanism that protects the intellectual property? The answer is the World Intellectual Property Organization, an agency of the United Nations.
The World Intellectual Property Organization, or WIPO, is considered to be the watchdog of the international intellectual property system. Watching intellectual property is a huge task to say the least. Start with content found on the Web, add most of the music in the world, toss in every movie made in the last 20 years, and then consider most software available today. And, we're only scratching the surface.
Each year, World Intellectual Property Day is observed on April 26 with events that seek to raise public awareness and understanding of intellectual property. This year's theme was "Innovation - Linking the World." Along with the normal observance of World IP Day, this year brought two milestones related to intellectual property. First, WIPO celebrated the 10th anniversary of World Intellectual Property Day and, second, their 40th anniversary of existence.
What kinds of things does WIPO do for World Intellectual Property Day? Well, they do the normal, predictable things an organization might do. For instance, they make outreach material available on their Web site for anyone to use in local awareness campaigns. They also provide a list of activities by country for those interested in that sort of thing.
Out of curiosity I checked the list for United States events and found only one. It was a showcase of Western American Folklore held at the U.S. Mission in Geneva, Switzerland, with a presentation on the life and art of Poet Henry Real Bird.
Ron Poland is a professor in the Computer Information Systems AAS program at Clinton Community College. Poland is certified in company repair and networking by the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA). He is also a Cisco certified network assistant. Questions may be sent to him via e-mail at email@example.com.