Intellectual Property: A Very Short Introduction, New From Oxford University Press20/03/2017 by Kim Treanor for Intellectual Property Watch Leave a CommentShare this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)IP-Watch is a non-profit independent news service, and depends on subscriptions. To access all of our content, please subscribe now. You may also offer additional support with your subscription, or donate.In Intellectual Property: A Very Short Introduction, by Siva Vaidhyanathan, readers are introduced to the basics of intellectual property, framed in a way that illustrates how intellectual property both shapes and is shaped by larger economic, political and social contexts. While the volume is small, only measuring 101 pages, Vaidhyanathan provides an introduction to a multitude of intellectual property concepts and history. Vaidhyanathan’s book provides the reader with a basic introduction to patents, copyright and trademarks, and relates this information through a series of real-world examples of corporations enforcing intellectual property rights.These stories are not only examples, but provide a structural basis for the larger question of why intellectual property rights exist and how they are shaped. The examples used create an illustration of how intellectual property shapes the system in which people live. This is a story not only of the history of intellectual property and the evolution of laws governing it, but the story of how policies can be shaped to create artificial scarcity for some items, both contributing to innovation and serving the interests of specific actors.While stories of enforcement from companies like Google, Starbucks and Amazon will be more relatable for a Western audience, Vaidhyanathan also gives readers an introduction to the harmonisation of global standards for intellectual property protections, and discusses some controversies and ambiguities the system has created. The access to knowledge movement is introduced, as well as controversies which surround access to patented medicines. Vaidhyanathan also includes stories of artists who have defended their use of trademarks to make a public commentary on corporate branding.Examples such as these provide an introduction to issues of public good, fair use, cultural expression and the public domain. Through the history and stories provided, the reader is invited to see intellectual property as a system which is inherently political, and reflects social values. Beyond providing an introduction to the basics of the system, Vaidhyanathan invites the reader to consider intellectual property as contingent upon and constitutive of the larger societal and global structure in which we live.Intellectual Property: A Very Short Introduction is one volume in the “Very Short Introductions” series published by Oxford University Press and will be released on 23 March.Kim Treanor is an intern at Intellectual Property Watch and a student in the graduate program of International Affairs at the New School in New York, where she studies development, trade and public health. Image Credits: Oxford U. PressShare this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)RelatedKim Treanor may be reached at email@example.com."Intellectual Property: A Very Short Introduction, New From Oxford University Press" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.