In Celebration of World IP Day

What is World IP day?

The 15th World Intellectual Property took place on April 26th, 45 years to the day after the WIPO convention came into force. While the day is not really held for IP professionals like us, it’s one the team at London IP greets warmly every year as it’s always interesting to see what theme the WIPO will choose each year.


The event aims to raise general understanding of issues surrounding IP, helping people to better comprehend why intellectual property rules are in place and how they impact on their everyday lives. The focus is on celebrating the ways IP helps to develop areas such as the arts, music and technology and publicising information and advice that helps people adhere to IP legislation across the globe.

What happened for World IP day?

You can find out about the events that were held all over the world this Intellectual Property Day using the WIPO’s interactive map.  Activities taking place ranged from a roundtable with the President of the Licensing Executive Society in Japan through to a Golf Tournament held in Argentina.

Why we should “Get up, Stand up for Music’bob-marley-151687_640

This year the theme for World IP day was “Get up, Stand up for Music’, with the lyrics of Bob Marley used as a tagline for a campaign that introduced specific issues surrounding the streaming, downloading, performance and purchase of music. World IP day was also used as a platform to introduce guidelines for holding art or cultural events such as festivals; occasions where many IP (what?) surface both during the organisation and operational phases.

Questions posed as part of this year’s theme included:

  • What is the future of our relationship with music?
  • How will it be created and disseminated?
  • How will we listen to it?
  • And how will we ensure that all those involved in bringing us this universal pleasure can make a living from their craft?

These are all interesting topics in their own right and they are particularly pertinent here in the UK following the recent Intellectual Property updates. As a reminder, these introduced a private music copying exception that allows those who purchase CDs to copy them to MP3 players.

SONY DSCThis year’s focus on IP issues around music also seems well-Robin_Thicke_2012_croppedtimed considering the furore surrounding the Blurred Lines case. Just in case you missed the outcome of one of the biggest musical IP cases of all time, US judges recently ruled in favour of Marvin Gaye’s family against Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke, ordering them to pay a record $7.4 million in damages. There has been much speculation since as to how the case may impact on both artists and the wider music industry. Will artists be less inclined to include influences from their predecessors? Is it possible to avoid musical influence in this day in age and where exactly does the line fall when it comes to musical plagiarism? Dare we say, the line is still in part a little blurred.


While World IP Day definitely has its part to play in bringing IPissues to the foreground so that the general public and artists alike are more informed when cases like this hit the spotlight, as covered in our recent blog post, there’s still very much a case for increasing IP education in schools.

You can learn more about World IP Day on the Facebook page. Did you take part or will you be planning an event of some kind for next year’s celebrations? What did you think of this year’s theme?