Happy World IP Day – Let us not become the Prey of the (IP) Fray!

Prey of IP Fray[1]

 They say “all the rights are reserved”.

We ask “for whom/by whom?”

They say “we own them”

We ask “so?”

They said “shut up, we created it”

We said, “for what?”

They say “we hail (now)”

We implore “hark back!”

They angle us as “anti”

We paint them “pro”

But in this fray, don’t all (we + they) become the prey?

Wish you all a Happy World IP Day.

For a moment, we should hark back and accept that ‘world IP day’ is celebrated in a world where innovation and creativity have (always?) existed and flourished outside and without IP. But let’s not plotz over IP here while thinking of its pejorative past, but take a tread and pray that one day, IP be placed at its desirable pedestal. The term ‘Happy’ (in ‘Happy World IP Day’) also harvests one such a ‘Hope’ – though a multifaceted one involving an intergenerational ingenuity.

But before getting wonted to this wishful thinking, also take a breath and remind our brethren (and sistren) that IP is just a proxy for innovation which is required for social progress, thus IP is not an end, especially not the one worth fighting over. Sadly, this does not align with our reality. Today IP has become a more bandied word in the world than ever before so much so that this seems to have also wrecked a war. A worrying war between two troops – where one side is averring its (further) affirmation and the other is raving for its reformation, resulting in “Pro(IP) v/s Anti(IP)”. Ask ourselves, where will it lead to? – Nowhere/Somewhere/else where?

While I can feel the underlying force behind this versus-esque narrative and don’t intend to dush the idea that the ‘self’ needs ‘other’ (and vice versa) to survive (Yin-yang-ism? That may be good for life in general). But for IP? Nah!

This is further corroborated by IP’s oft-celebrated (but fitfully-frowned) idea/metaphor of “balance” which gives a hazy hope that someday, maybe on the judgment day (Read: Literally in a Court), balance will be attained. But for that too, first, the system has to be balanceable (is it?) – it should be such where all the interests and (in)justices can be cared about. Do we have that kind of system anywhere today except in the State of Mind, Imgaination’.

Outside this State of Mind, with the vice/virtue of (however you see it) versus-esque, I just see youth joining this binary brawl (IP and Youth is this year’s theme), yearning for one side’s win and loss of the other. Alas … will the world ever be able to see a better future after/during this war? Mind it, progress is much more than what ‘IP’ claims and aims to have. Let’s hope for IP’s heyday.

With this note and hope, let’s also hope that our youth quest the system, and get the best of the system. Let them (or make them) cohere the creativity to critique the system, instead of getting fatigued by the system (Yes, to critique is to care). Let’s help them see beyond what they are shown.

And finally, with that, let’s commemorate this auspicious day that goes by the grandiose title of World IP Day(As Prof. Basheer once penned).

Once again, Happy IP World Day from me and my IPRMENTLAW family.


The idea/theme of this short post is not completely new or original. I was introduced to this idea by Swaraj Barooah, but Prof. Shamnad Basheer has often touched upon this theme, and Prof. Jessica Litman have also highlighted this.

Image source – here

[1] Fray means a battle or fight