Software License and Intellectual Property Rights

Combination of set of specific instructions, data and programs which is used for the operation of computer and to execute a specific task is said to be software. Software in general referred to an application or a program which runs on a peripheral. Software can be classified into two parts as application software and system software. Application software’s are usually the software’s which is user downloaded software’s in order to fulfill what they need and the system software’s ]includes the programs which supports the application software. Furthermore there are software’s such as commercial software’s, free software’s open source software’s etc. From that free and open source software’s development models have tremendous contribution over the computing. While these software applications make a big revolution in computing we as the future growing world as a promise all of these activities were built on the top of legal document .Those we called as the licenses. First of all let’s talk about what are the open souse software’s, free software’s and commercial software’s are,

Open Source Software

The source code of the Open source software is released with a license .And these are computer software which the copyright holders gives the permission to the users to change the software, to study and to distribute the software with any person. And the source code of the software is available for the modification purposes. It includes the license which any programmer can modify the software as they prefer. By that we can fix bugs, improve the functionality or to convert the software into something which suit to the programmer. This was founded in around 1998.

Commercial Software

Software which is available commercially is called as commercial software or we can call it as proprietary software. It doesn’t give the permission to access the source code because it’s someone’s intellectual property. Because of this the user always has to pay when using. The software can be a shared intellectual property when it is developed by several people together.

This software can be downloaded and modified without any restriction or any charges. In 1980s this concept was established by MIT. There are many different kind of license which allows the programmers to change the software with various modifications and conditions are attached.

We can categorize the open source software into two types as copyleft and permissive. Copyright is a kind of restriction which tells the user cannot modify, use or share the content without any acknowledgement of the copyright holder. Copyleft is opposite of it. In here it tells that the other people have the permission to share modify and use the content.

When talking about the permissive open source license it’s a non-copyleft license that ensures the freedom to use, redistribution and the modification of the content and also letting the proprietary derivative works. Some of these licenses are,

MIT License- This is also a free permissive license among the developers there is a high adaptation to this license usage because of its simplicity. The Apache License- It’s an OS software license which was released in 1995 by the AS foundation. It is a one of most popular license among the world.

Microsoft Public Licenses- it’s a free and OS license which was released by Microsoft. The users are free to use the software to reproduce/modify and distribute derivative work or original work under this license.in here .you may not able to use any trademarks, logo, contributors name when doing this. It is not required to release the source code when you distribute the software under the MS-PL. In this license the terms and conditions of the document are very short. And have used a very coherent language.

BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution) – this license let you to freely modify the software and to distribute its code in binary or source format.

CDDL (Common Development and Distribution License) – It’s an OS license which was published by sun microsystem. The users are free to use the software to reproduce/modify and distribute derivative work or original work under this license CDDL. In here you must not make any changes in the copyright, trademarks or the patent contained in the software.

EPL (Eclipse Public License) – It’s an OS license which was developed by the Eclipse foundation. It’s a copyleft license.

GPL (GNU General Public License) – It is the most popular open source software license used by the people around the world

Intellectual Property

First of all before talking about the intellectual property rights let’s focus about what is meant by intellectual property. It refers that something which is a creation of mind such as inventions, artistic works and literary works etc. Then those intellectual properties is divided into two parts as,

When thinking about industrial property it is composed of patents for inventions, industrial designs, trademarks and geographical indications etc. In copyright it focuses on the literary work as an example novels, poems etc. And also artistic work (e.g. Paintings, photographic, sculptures and drawings), films, music etc. These copyrights are related to performing artists and their performance.

It is basically like any other property rights and belongs to an old concept. These are allowing the creators, the owners which own the patents trademarks or copyrighted works to benefit from their own investment or work from the creation. In the 27th article universal declaration of human rights it has outlined these rights. The importance of protecting these intellectual property rights were first recognized in the by two conventions as Paris convention and Berne convention in 1883 and 1886 respectively. Protection of industrial property was recognized in the Paris convention and the protection of the literary and artistic works were recognized in Berne convention.

Intellectual property rights are important for the economic development and the social and cultural well-being. These rights include patent, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets etc. By these IP rights it gives a relief to the owners that the competitors will not steal the idea of his doings or taking any credit by that. Therefore if you find a new invention or a new idea the first thing you have to do is you should file for the intellectual property rights. By that no one will able to steal your idea from you.

When talking about the trademarks that runs back to 3500 years before and it was used by the potters to identify the fired clay pots. And by now this concept is serving as the indicator to show the origin of the product or the source of the product. This also separates the product from the other enterprises. Protecting the creations of the minds have been started from many years before in about 15th century .At about the 16th century the idea was spread over many counties and the government also began to think about the benefits of uplifting and encouraging the inventors and to motivate them to build and create more inventions. The initial copyright legislation was happened in 1709 in the England. These laws in protection of the IP rights are not static and they changes according to the technological changes and the changes happen in the society. With the improvement happens in the technology it gives greatest opportunities for this IP system also. This field grew up rapidly during the 20th century with the creation of machines like television, radio, cassette recorders, satellites etc. There is a website called intellectual property websites which gives a better understanding about the laws of intellectual properties and there applications. One of the intellectual property rights is patent. Let’s talk about that,

The patent is giving the owner the legal rights for excluding others from selling /marketing, importing an invention which was done by him and it was given for a certain period of time period. It may be several years. Though patent exclusive rights for the invention is granted to the inventor. To receive the patent the inventor has to express the technical information about the invention in public. Patent is actually lasting for 20 years from the filling date of the patent application. Patent is a come kind of encouragement given to the people who are having new ideas and concepts and also provides a protection to their production. The inventions which the patent certificate is given cannot be commercially made, distributed and sell without any acknowledgement of the owner. Patent rights are legally authorized in the court therefor the owner have full power to stop the patent infringement. Patent owners also have power to give permission to other parties to use his invention. Let’s move on to our next example,

Copyright and related rights are the laws which granted to the authors, creators for the artistic works, literary works etc. This can be sometimes for a short period of time. The people who are getting benefits from this copyright intellectual property rights and the related rights can be mention as performers (musicians and actors etc.), phonogram producers, broadcasting organizations etc.