Intellectual property laws are territorial in nature, determined and enforced by the nation state in which one resides. However, Information Communication Technologies (ICT’s) are proposing a unique challenge to intellectual property law, due to the universal nature of the Internet.

Our paper aims first to briefly discuss the history of copyright, and why it is felt that there is a need to protect the intellectual works of authors, outlining how the laws of copyright originated during the late 19th century to shift the control of power away from publishing houses to the authors themselves.


Secondly, our paper will outline the objectives of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), and the ways in which they are trying to protect intellectual property on a global scale. This section will identify how many countries have agreed to the international policies of WIPO, what these policies are, and identify why some countries have been reluctant to join. Importantly, it discusses various political economic reasoning for developed countries to be a part of such an organisation, and the dilemmas that such an organisation proposes for those countries which are still in the developmental stages of Information Communication Technologies (ICT’s). Due to this problem, this paper also identifies how at times ICT’s are seen as widening the digital divide through the various standards set by developed nations.

Ultimately what our paper looks to encapsulate the idea that whilst ICT’s are of immense benefit in many ways, they do pose problems for intellectual property at this particular time in history. It seeks to educate those reading of these difficulties, and how one cannot treat ICT’s as a primarily good force in the global world. One needs to be aware of how they are favoring one particular cultural viewpoint, especially in regard to the protection of copyright.

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Post Contributed By:

Abhishek Bhargava

Indian Institute of Legal Studies 



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