“Creativity is one of the highest forms of human energy. It is a defining human trait that enables us to design and use tools, while giving us the ability to solve problems. In the modern world, creativity and its outcome–innovation–are credited as the greatest predictors for economic advancement, equal to, or surpassing, investments. Creativity can be a vehicle for empowerment and fulfilment or, if denied or abused, it can lead to frustration, apathy, alienation, and even violence. The role of creativity has been magnified by the explosive developments in Information and Communication Technologies. ICTs are the most powerful means to produce, preserve, and communicate the fruits of human creativity, including information, know-how, knowledge, and works of art.” (ICT and Creativity: Towards a global cooperation for quality contents in the Information Society – The Vienna Conclusions 2005)
Intellectual property includes copyrights, patents, trademarks and trade secrets. The present chapter will mainly focus on intellectual property rights with specific reference to the digital world.
As we already considered intellectual property is key issue in any field of activity. One of the usual reference points in attributing the paternity of an artefact is the ownership or “registration” of the “original”. So we use to refer to the manuscript, the negative, the technical sketches etc. All this was in the world of “analogue”. What happens in the digital domain?
Recently we faced the so called “digital revolution” that influenced a number of fields of activity with opportunities and threats.
The digital technology has meaningfully increased the expressive opportunities of creative people both offering new form of expression and drastically reducing the production costs of prototypes and products.
Significant examples are the music and video fields where the production costs have drastically come down allowing young talents to approach their own productions. In addition in the computer games field and even more in the Web publishing field the use of easy access2 technologies has concurred to offer the possibility to express themselves even to talented people not particularly skilled in computer science.