IP, it’s Everywhere

13 April 2010

When I was a little girl, I was very aware of copyrights and patents.  I have a feeling this was not normal and more likely the product of spending a good portion of my childhood hanging out with attorneys, namely my dad and grandfather.  For me, copyright notices were everywhere.  My grandfather put them on the back of the Polaroid photos he took of my sister and I playing at his desk.  My great-aunt, who is an author and scholar, would send me typed letters with penciled in copyright notices on them. And to this day, my father still puts the little c in a circle at the bottom of love poems he writes for my mother.  (I guess just in case a thief comes in and pauses to remove the letter from its frame and photocopy it before escaping.)  My grandpa explained to me what the little © meant and how to look for the symbol to find when a work was created.  He also taught me what the long-string of small numbers on most of my toys meant and why sometimes things just said “pat. pending.”

As much as my acute awareness of intellectual property was odd twenty years ago, it is not odd for today’s children.  We, all of us, adult or child, are constantly bombarded by notices, threats, claims, arguments and the-world-is-ending claims about intellectual property.

The purpose of this blog has been to discuss those little IP peek-a-boos in daily life.  However, the distant third-person format has made this difficult and often been enough to push me into the classic I-just-didn’t-get-around-to-it excuse of procrastination.  For that reason I am shifting the perspective, as you can tell, starting with this post.  I intend to keep the topics varied and relevant to people with different levels of knowledge about intellectual property. Hopefully my small group of readers (Hi Mom!) will find the content more accessible and appearing more often this way.

Me and Daddy at the office Burgeoning Attorney: My daddy and me at his law office, circa 1996.


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