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What is the World Intellectual Property Organization?

Updated on November 19, 2013

Helping to "encourage creative activity" since 1967

The Headquarters of the WIPO in Geneva, Switzerland
The Headquarters of the WIPO in Geneva, Switzerland

Want to make Something New?

What if you spent your whole life inventing something or creating a new idea? Consider that in addition to the time you have spent, you have probably invested much financially and made many sacrifices. Now suppose that as soon as you tried to "go public" with your invention or idea, perhaps to commercialize it, your work was stolen, copied, and sold, all before you could receive your fair reward? Naturally you would be very upset and would be discouraged from further inventing or creating.


You see, if intellectual property is not protected, businesses and individuals will have little incentive to innovate and therefore the growth of new technology and new ideas will slow dramatically. Chances are you haven't even heard of the WIPO. However, this organization plays a critical role in protecting the growth of innovation and research and development of companies across the globe.

The World Intellectual Property Organization: Protecting Your Ideas

The WIPO is an international organization of the United Nations whose purpose is to aid in the protection of intellectual property. This, they believe, helps “rewards creativity, stimulates innovation and contributes to economic development while safeguarding the public interest."

One of the ways that WIPO does this is through their Arbitration and Mediation Center, which is located in Geneva, Switzerland. They mediate and bring resolution to property disputes brought by commercial entities

For more information on intellectual property, please read my Hub: Types of Intellectual Property and Legal Protection

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What is the Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) and how does it work?

The UDRP is essentially the set process for resolving internet domain name disputes. It has been established by ICANN (which stands for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, a quasi-government organization based out of Marina Del Ray, CA). Before registering a domain name, the party registering “must ‘represent and warrant,’ among other things, that registering the name 'will not infringe upon or otherwise violate the rights of any third party,' and agree to participate in an arbitration-like proceeding should any third party assert such a claim” (Wikipedia, 2010). Basically, before registering you must agree that your not stealing someone else’s name and that if necessary, you will agree to mediation over a dispute.

UDRP helps to resolve disputes quicker. If a complaint is found valid, then the responding party loses rights and ownership to the domain name in question.  

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