THE WORLD INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY ORGANIZATION (WIPO)
BACKGROUND: Intellectual property includes industrial property, such as inventions, trademarks, and designs, on the one hand, and the objects of copyright and neighboring rights on the other. Until a century ago, there were no international instruments for the protection of intellectual property. Legislative provisions for the protection of inventors, writers, dramatists, and other creators of intellectual property varied from country to country and could be effective only within the borders of states adopting them. It came to be widely recognized that adequate protection of industrial property encourages industrialization, investment, and honest trade. That the arts would be advanced by legal safeguards in favor of their practitioners had long been argued, but such safeguards were difficult to devise and enact into law. The Paris Convention of 20 March 1883 and the Bern Convention of 9 September 1886 represented initial steps toward systematic provision of the two sorts of international protection that led eventually to the creation of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
Copyright. Monthly review of the Bern Union in English and French. Covers ratifications and contains texts of laws, court decisions, studies.
Industrial Property. Monthly review of the Paris Union in English and French. Covers ratifications and contains texts of laws, court decisions, studies.
International Designs Bulletin. Monthly review in English and French. Contains notifications and modifications concerning the international registration of industrial designs.
Model Laws for Developing Countries on Inventions, on Marks, Trade Names and Acts of Unfair Competition and on Designs. In English, French, and Spanish.
WIPO Magazine . In English, French, and Spanish.
(WIPO also publishes the texts of conventions, treaties, and agreements on intellectual property; international classifications; and model laws. Many documents are available on the WIPO web site http://www.wipo.org/eng/main.htm ).