Intellectual Property Law and Practice in the Blockchain Realm
Computer Law & Security Review, Volume 34, Issue 4, August 2018, 847-862, doi.org/10.1016/j.clsr.2018.05.027
16 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2018
Date Written: August 1, 2018
Blockchain technology is claimed to be and perceived as one of the revolutionary technologies that will have an enormous impact on our lives in the forthcoming years and decades. The legal questions surrounding blockchain appear to be among the most controversial issues surrounding this novel technology, which create uncertainties as to the scope and speed of its eventual adoption. Is it legal to use blockchain technology? Does or should any governmental authority or court take a record stored in blockchain into consideration in their decisions? Is blockchain reliable? Can the technology be used for the protection and enforcement of legal and property rights? The technological advancements offered by blockchain promise wide ranges of use in a variety of sectors and legal areas, including intellectual property (IP) law. This paper will focus primarily on the possible opportunities that blockchain may offer with respect to the future of IP law and discuss its potential impact on the registration, management and enforcement of intellectual property rights. We will proceed to offer blockchain-based solutions to foster the operation of IP offices, reinforce customs procedures in detecting counterfeit products, and enhance the efficiency of IP rights management by the right holders. The paper concludes by providing some suggestions to pave the way for the advancement of blockchain technology and to increase the number of people that this technology reaches, as well as its successful integration into the various services and registration/transaction channels that we use today.
Keywords: Blockchain, Intellectual Property, Ledger, Electronic Signature, Electronic Record, Copyright Management, Royalty, Registration
JEL Classification: K11, K24
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation