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Intellectual property and PyeongChang

Jan 23,2018
Intellectual property and the Olympics are quite closely related. Let’s look at the torch as an example. The shape is inspired by Korea’s traditional white porcelain, and it is a registered design. Key technologies of the torch are also protected by patents. Just as the torch is full of intellectual property, the uniforms of the athletes, equipment and facilities contain countless intellectual properties with latest technologies and unique designs.

The Korean Intellectual Property Office is working hard to make sure the values that represent the Olympics are not infringed. Most notable activity is the special law enforcement officers on trademark rights.

Their main duty is to assure that counterfeit or imitation goods of official Winter Olympics products, such as the PyeongChang long padded coats or character toys, are not distributed in the market. However, counterfeit goods appear online and offline, and they use “ambush marketing” to get a free ride on the Olympic boom. The advanced intellectual property infringement makes prevention and crackdown harder, but the Korean Intellectual Property Office encourage the staff to keep up the good work to protect the intellectual property of the Olympics for the successful hosting of Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games.

“Faster, Higher, Stronger” is the Olympic motto, and rather than desperately working for victory, it shows the indomitable will to take greater challenge. Today, athletes from around the world are training and preparing with the strong will and sportsmanship. In the Olympics, tricks don’t work. The same goes for the intellectual property. If one can steal other’s ideas and efforts, intellectual property cannot be a catalyst for innovation. The Korean Intellectual Property Office can contribute to make the Republic of Korea a more just country by creating the intellectual property system of ideas and passions becoming the foundation of success.

*Commissioner of the Korea Intellectual Property Office

Sung Yun-mo