A Layman’s Narrative of Patents, TK and Biopiracy

As many of you may know, SpicyIP has been around for about 5 years now (since 2005). Since then, we’ve mainly conveyed the latest in Indian IP through the medium of “text”. Often times, we’ve used “images” too.
However, we’ve fallen short on the video (and youtube) count. All that is set to change. We bring you our first video, albeit an amateurish and rather badly shot one (from my digital camera).

What amazed me was the fact that a layperson in Rishikesh (the gentleman worked in a small hotel) could articulate his views so well on patents, biopiracy and TK. He also refers to “trademarks” and the famous Chotiwala hotel in Rishikesh.

Here is the link to the video for those interested. It’s in Hindi–but I hope to have subtitles soon.

And here is the brief description of the video.

“A layman’s views on patents, biopiracy and traditional knowledge (from India). Quite astonishing that he had this range of knowledge, given that he wasn’t a lawyer or scientist or a patent attorney or someone who had anything to do at all with TK! Just a member of the public (he worked in a hotel in Rishikesh) who had been exposed to patents and biopiracy thanks to the Indian media!

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6 thoughts on “A Layman’s Narrative of Patents, TK and Biopiracy”

  1. random comment…….

    I know you have global readers but still….. it is so unfortunate to call “Unfortunately, its in Hindi-“

  2. You have named your blog as spicy “india” and you have used the term “unfortunately” for HINDI language…
    Do put across in a better way as you have readers from all across the world.

  3. Dear Anons,

    The term “unfortunately” was meant to refer only to lack of accessibility by many readers. You and I may speak and understand Hindi—but a great many readers may not, including several from India itself. In any case, since this term might be potentially misconstrued, I’ve deleted references to it.

  4. The video is indeed a eyeopener as to the perception of Intellectual Property among the local population of India .. coincidentally I came across this blog post and video in a day when I was particularly angry with the limping local business in IP for budding professionals like us due to lack of knowhow among the corporates and local industry in India about Intellectual Property and conscious generation and protection of the same .. was feeling the need for an aggressive awareness campaign on the issue but on seeing the video my opinion varied

  5. Thanks Debabrata,

    I’ve always bemoaned the excessive politicisation of IP issues in India. but one of the positive fall outs of this politicisation is a greater awareness of issues by the general public. Of course, the media does not always get it right…but it is our duty to educate them on the technicalities and enable them to reach a more nuanced understanding of IP issues.

  6. Dear Sir,

    It is really nice to hear that laymen have the brief ideas of IP aspect & it is due to media as you said, I also want to say thanks to our Indian media. But sometimes media persons are misinterpreting the term & concepts. As,I hereby provide some titles & links of the articles which can show how misinterpretation happened….

    1.Patent Rights for Naga Chilli (link: http://www.nagalandpost.com/ShowStory.aspx?npoststoryiden=UzEwMDk2MDY%3D-S9cbFrlJQNw%3D)

    My View : To the best of my knowledge Naga chilli is seeking for GI protection & not for Patent.In addition to that India have the unique legislation as “Protection of Plant Variety & Farmer Right’s Act-2001” and till now registration is not opened for chilli.

    2. Hyderbad Haleem set for Copyright Protection (link :http://gulfnews.com/news/world/india/hyderabad-haleem-set-for-copyright-protection-1.671818

    My View: To the best of knowledge Hyderabad Haleem is sought for GI Protection ,and the GI certificate granted in the first week of september, 2010 by Mr.P.H.Kurian,When Mr.Kurian came to Hyderabad on 4 September,2010.
    So, Hyderabad haleem doesn’t fall in the purview of Copyright protection.

    So,If a laymen can talk about IP aspects then we can expect the correct use of term from a media persons.

    Onkar Singh

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