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Today physical boundaries have ceased to exist. In this global village
knowledge travels faster than even the speed of light! Whatever event
takes place in any part of the world you cannot remain immune to new
invention, introduction of new technology, a new scientific finding, new
artistic design or any new R&D.

This new discovery soon becomes available to other people. This is in
fact a threat to the inventor as it can be used by someone else to profit
from or for any other purpose. To protect the right of these inventors
the concept of patents was introduced

This is infact necessary and has been helping individuals, company’s and
even countries that otherwise would have been at a disadvantage. For a
specified period the rights are completely exclusives so these inventors
can use it for business purpose and can make fortunes.

A discoverer needs to fill an application form at the patent office where
he will have to furnish all the relevant details about his invention-the
purpose and the usefulness of the discovery should be outlined
exhaustively; the inventor may even be required to use illustrative
diagrams. Different countries may have slightly different procedure but
the central idea remains intact. Those desirous of obtaining patent are
required to make their invention public.

After thorough examination the applicant is granted the patent rights.
The patentee can use his discovered baby as per his own requirements and
during those periods no one else is allowed to use the patentee’s work
for any purpose-business or personal. After the expiry of the patent
periods anyone is free to use the technology.

Patents are of different types like chemical patent, biological patent,
software patent business method patent, petty patent or innovation
patent, design patent and plant patent.

Although patents are territorial in nature and are mostly governed by the
national laws but these laws are universally recognized. However patents
have been the cause of major disputes too. If the dispute is confined to
a national boundary then the respective country’s patent office can
intervene but in the case of international disputes the matter becomes
very complicated.

Efforts are being made to bring all patent laws under a single
jurisdiction such as bringing it under the ambit of World Trade
Organization. TRIPs Agreement was a move aimed in this direction and
hopefully have also achieved success.

Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, European
Patent Convention, European Patent Organization, and Patent Cooperation
are some of the other international forums which are actively trying to
ward off international disputes with regard to patents.
There are those who are against the patent. They argue that patent grant
exclusive rights to a particular individual or company who can use it to
exploit the people by eliminating the competitors. Moreover if the
competitor was somehow late in reporting the discovery then he has to
suffer. Patent also may act as stumbling block in new discovery.

Although arguments and counter-arguments will always exist but it is a
known fact that patent have helped many discoverer in protecting their