Intellectual Property (IP) may be considered to be a bundle of different intangible property rights.  Patents, designs, plant breeder’s varieties, semiconductor mask, copyright and trade secrets are each forms of IP, each with distinct (although in many cases somewhat similar) sets of rules, requirements and benefits.

In addition to these forms of IP that relate in some fashion to inventions, there are other forms of IP.

Trade-marks are perhaps the best-known and most important of these alternative forms.  Trade-marks provide an exclusive right to an association, through a word, slogan, design (or colour, smell or sound) between certain wares (products) and/or services and a person or company who is the source of those wares and/or services, or a certain quality associated with those wares and/or services.  Trade-marks may be registered or unregistered.

Copyright is itself a bundle of related rights to the exclusive right to reproduce a creative expression or work.  Each set of rights corresponds to a different type of work, such as an artistic, dramatic or literary work.  The type of work defines the type of rights available to the owner of the work.  Most jurisdictions provide slightly different rules and rights and even types of works.  However, as a general rule, copyright subsists upon creation, and registration is not strictly necessary.  As well, most jurisdictions recognize the copyright of other jurisdictions.