Duncan Bucknell


It’s all very well for external consultants to talk about what’s needed in IP Strategy.  Most IP Strategy is done in-house, with internal clients and with considerable personal risk. Here are 6 qualities we’ve noticed in those operating at a very high level as in-house IP Strategists.   Thank you to those brilliant internal IP Strategists that we work alongside. They make decisions Uncertainty is everywhere in IP Strategy, particularly for those faced… Read More

Bloomberg published a nice piece just the other day on common phrases that are trademarked.  Here are a few: “It’s gonna be awesome” (The Barbarian Group) “We should talk” (Bank of New York) “That’s a good idea” (Rubbermaid) Readers unaware of how trademarks work would be forgiven for thinking that they can’t use those phrases anymore, or at least in business. Obviously this is wrong – the trademarks cover goods and services… Read More

I have been listening to the book The Upside of Irrationality by Dan Areily, and he spends a considerable amount of time on an issue that comes up with small enterprises seeking to sell their creations to large enterprises that also have their own creativity groups.  Through a number of experiments he illustrates the natural tendency of creators to overvalue their work and the natural tendency of other creators to devalue outside… Read More

The strategic principle behind this mistake is one of the classics of strategy.  IP is opportunity and not exploiting an opportunity, especially a hard won opportunity, means to make an investment and not seek a reward. IP can be used within product solutions, it can be licensed, or it can otherwise be used to shape relationships with customers, partners, and competitors.  It will foster useful interactions or keep others from competing where… Read More

All the IP in the world is potentially available to help you advance your business.  This includes IP owned by customers, partners, and competitors.  How you make this so depends upon your associated strategy.  For example, if your competitor has IP that you would like to have and has been reluctant to share, then you might point out that your alternative to their cooperation is to make a competitive solution of your… Read More

Can you really have a cohesive IP Strategy at the corporate level? I don’t think so. Unless of course they are one and the same thing.  (Small companies with effectively one business unit obviously have the same IP Strategy for both.) Otherwise, each business unit needs its own defined IP Strategy – focused on the strategy and its execution required to meet its specific goals.  As soon as you start building a… Read More

If you look at past issues of IAM from the last 6 months you will see on average one article per month dealing with the topic of reputation management. And for good reason, as social media and increasing access to information now makes it easier for companies both to build and loose reputation… Why talk about IP reputation management though? Because ramification of intellectual property actions can now more and more be… Read More

They are legal rights, so why not treat intellectual property as purely a legal issue? First, the role of most legal departments is oriented around defense and risk reduction. While defense is important, no doubt, there is a good chance that treating IP as a purely legal issue will set yourself up with an unsecure defensive position – given that the IP portfolio may not align with the business strategy – all… Read More

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