That is the theme of an article which appeared in the Hindu “Open Page” today. The author goes on to say-

Leaving aside the debate of whether IPR protection is needed or not “or”, what are the pros and cons of IPR protection, what is required is to understand the need of the hour of our country, the unemployment scenario and how IPR in coming days would help in generating employment? No doubt protection of intellectual property rights can foster economic growth, provide incentives for innovation and attract investment that will create new jobs and opportunities.

Oh, is that how we should fight unemployment?! And what sort of employment is it going to provide?

One can make a decent living in IPR as a patent agent, trademark agent, patent analyst, patent attorney, copyright attorney, IPR consultant, patent examiner, trademark examiner, IP scientist in a research organisation, can pursue Ph.D. in IPR with interdisciplinary combinations, or start a department of IPR at university level or, if someone has an entrepreneur zeal, one can start a coaching institute in IPR, or a training institute in different areas of IPR (like patent drafting, searches, analysis, mapping, etc).

A whole new class of “middle men”! How innovative! Of course, the lawyers would be the ones who benifit most- like in the US.

I find the author’s eagerness to “leave aside the debate of whether “IPR” protection is needed or not” rather disturbing. The society seems to have a deep conviction, developed by the influence of the mainstream media, that “IPR” provides incentive for creative activity and leads to economic growth. This is an idea that appeals to the one of the basest emotions of man- greed, which from my experience is incompatible with any creative activity- and is embraced by most economists as it fits in marvellously with the rest of their “science” of greed.

I’d recommend Free Software, Free Society, a collection of speeches and essys by RMS, as a primer to anyone who is confused by the inappropriate term “Intellectual Property”.