Intellectual property (IP) is a category of property that includes intangible creations of the human intellect There are many types of intellectual property, and some countries recognize more than others. The most well-known types are copyrights, patents, trademarks, and trade
secrets. Early precursors to some types of intellectual property existed in societies such as Ancient Rome, but the modern concept of intellectual property developed in England in the 17th and 18th centuries. The term "intellectual property" began to be used in the 19th century, though it was not until the late 20th century that intellectual property became commonplace in the majority of the world's legal systems.
The main purpose of intellectual property law
is to encourage the creation of a wide variety of intellectual goods. To achieve this, the law
gives people and businesses property rights to the information and intellectual goods they create, usually for a limited period of time. This gives economic incentive for their creation, because it allows people to profit from the information and intellectual goods they create. These economic incentives are expected to stimulate innovation and contribute to the technological progress of countries, which depends on the extent of protection granted to innovators.
The intangible nature of intellectual property presents difficulties when compared with traditional property like land or goods. Unlike traditional property, intellectual property is "indivisible", since an unlimited number of people can "consume" an intellectual good without it being depleted. Additionally,
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