Apr 2013

IPR Workshop for students of L’ecole de Design Nantes Atlantique

Time 10 AM

Venue Sristi School of Art, Design and Technology

The following is a guest post by Amrita Vasudevan, a 4th year student of Christ University School of Law, who is currently interning with CLPR.

CLPR in association with L’ecole de Design Nantes Atlantique organized a four day workshop on Intellectual Property Rights at the Sristi School of Art, Design and Technology based in Bangalore. The work shop was conducted from the 23rd to the 26th of April, 2013 and was tailored to address the needs of the students of the Trans-cultural Design programme of L’ecole de Design.

The class consisted of about fifteen students, mostly from France. The workshop was therefore suitably tailored to give the students a conceptual understanding of intellectual property (IP). The objective of the workshop was to give the students a working knowledge of Intellectual Property so that they become aware of their rights over the products they might design or collaborate on, either as part of their coursework or professional obligations.

The workshop dealt with five kinds of intellectual property rights over 3 days, and these were Copyright on Day 1, Trademarks and Geographical Indications on Day 2, Design Rights and Patents on Day 3. The fourth day of the workshop comprised a session on important concepts relating to contracts and licensing, and ended with a brief overview of all the intellectual property rights covered over the past three days. Every session comprised brief topical presentations accompanied by exercises designed to test the student’s working knowledge of the concepts.


Day 1:

The first session of the workshop was an introductory session conducted by Ms Jayna Kothari, who provided the students with a basic understanding of intellectual property and the rights associated with it. The session examined the need for protecting intellectual property, the ownership of these rights and what acts constitute infringement.

The second session of the day was taken by Ms Manojna Yeluri. In the course of her presentation she covered the key elements of Copyright, which included identifying the elements of copyrighted material; the idea – expression dichotomy; authorship; infringement, fair dealing/use and the significance of moral rights. She provided the students with various illustrations and cases to aide their understanding of these concepts.

The last session of the day, conducted by Ms Jayna Kothari covered the contentious topic of art appropriation and copyright.  The session highlighted the growing tension between, the stringent protection of copyright law and modernist tendencies in art like abstract expressionism, Dadaism and minimalism. She also touched upon the copyright of dramatic works and traditional art.


Day 2:

The second day was divided into three sessions; all three conducted by Ms. Nayana Udayashankar. The first session on trademarks, explored the key components of trademark law such as the different types of marks, the effects of registration, what constituted infringement and passing off. She referred to  several examples of infringement and passing off found in India, making it easier for the students to contribute to the discussion with many instances of infringement that they had encountered.

The next session briefly covered domain names and the slow encroachment of trademark law into domain names, while ending with a brief but informative discussion on Geographic indicators, and their relevance to artists and designers.


Day 3:


The day began with a session on Design Rights conducted by Ms. Manojna Yeluri. The session examined design rights, and the manner in which they provided additional protection to designers and their works, with particular reference to the aesthetic elements of their works.


The second session of the day dealt with Patents and was conducted by Ms. Jayna Kothari who provided the students with interesting examples of patent applications, while emphasising the commercial value of such rights.


Day 4:


The first session conducted by Ms. Guilia Cabianca discussed a burgeoning trend of licensing in intellectual property called the Creative Commons. Creative commons is an alternate licensing regime meant to foster creativity and has proven to be especially appealing to those people who consider the present regime of intellectual property law, stifling.


All licenses under the Creative Commons regime require attribution to the creator of the intellectual property, and in addition, may contain a permutation and combination of non-commercial use, non derivative use, and share alike terms. The creator of the work may also prescribe a license with a ‘no rights attached’ condition, better known as the zero license. Creative commons has permeated into various fields including software, beverages, medicine, media and design. Still in its nascent stage, Creative Commons is gradually being recognized in domestic legislations and courts.


The last session of the workshop conducted by Mr. Sudhir Krishnaswamy covered integrated property rights as well as contractual elements and commercial aspects of intellectual property. This session addressed the various kinds of agreements that the students may enter into in their line of work, focusing mainly on conditions of use of their works.


Two kinds of employment models were identified namely, consultants and independent product designers. The students were then made to identify the main features of an agreement entered into with either model for use products developed by them. Through this exercise the students learnt what to look out for in any agreement entered into by them for use of their services, and how best to protect the intellectual property in the work they produce.


In conclusion, the workshop proved to be a great experience to the members of CLPR, and we hope that the students who attended the workshop, benefitted from the brief but informative sessions we provided them with.

Time 10 AM

Venue Sristi School of Art, Design and Technology