Sport the Theme for this Year’s World IP Day

World Intellectual Property Day highlights the importance of IP rights and celebrates their contribution to creativity and innovation. The celebration takes place each year on April 26th, and was established in the year 2000 by the World IP Organization in a bid to raise global awareness about IP protection. This year’s theme is Reach for Gold and aims to highlight the enormous impact IP protection has on the world of sport, from grassroots to professional levels.

Today, sport constitutes a multi-billion dollar industry which is affected by IP rights in a multitude of ways. The demand on live broadcasting of matches and tournaments is higher than ever, and it seems the supply of these events never ceases to grow. As more and more sports become professionalised, live streaming and broadcasting become all the more frequent and, unfortunately, so do the illegal streaming websites.

This is only one of the reasons why protecting IP is such an important issue in the world of sports. Another is the abundance of athletes who serve as their own brands in order to obtain sponsorship and merchandising deals, as these products are a common target for counterfeiters. Technical progress and innovation within the sports industry is also under constant threat of being hijacked, copied or sold off.

This year’s World IP Day will highlight these issues as well as celebrate the endless benefits of sport to our society.

 

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