intellectual property (IP)

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An abstract legal concept, suggesting that a person can legally own certain intangible items, such as artistic works, texts, discoveries and inventions, and designs.

The concept of intellectual property is expressed through specific rights granted by laws.

The most common examples of intellectual property rights are copyright, trademarks, and patents.

There are many types of intellectual property, and the laws governing them vary from country to country.

Also see: copyright.