intellectual property


Definition of intellectual property

: property (such as an idea, invention, or process) that derives from the work of the mind or intellect also : an application, right, or registration relating to this

Examples of intellectual property in a Sentence

Any song that you write is your intellectual property.
Recent Examples on the Web Bosses in Tokyo echo Western gripes about woolly, haphazardly enforced rules, a tax system skewed towards Chinese companies, unreliable courts and theft of intellectual property. The Economist, "Japan Inc has thrived in China of late," 9 Nov. 2019 These include the extent to which the U.S. will roll back tariffs on Chinese imports as well as specific Chinese pledges to protect the intellectual property and trade secrets of U.S. companies. David J. Lynch, Anchorage Daily News, "China, U.S. make progress in trade talks, raising hopes of a breakthrough," 7 Nov. 2019 Less than a year and a half later, in May, Meredith sold the intellectual property of Sports Illustrated to a group called Authentic Brands. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, "The Ham-Handed, Money-Driven Mangling of Sports Illustrated and Deadspin," 3 Nov. 2019 Election giant Election Systems and Software (ES&S) acquired Diebold's voting division in 2009, but divested the intellectual property in 2010 to Dominion Voting Systems under an agreement with the Justice Department. NBC News, "Voting machine issues and viral video cast shadow on Mississippi governor's race," 29 Aug. 2019 For now, the intellectual property for those projects will remain in the United States as the company hopes for a compromise with the White House. Clare Duffy, CNN, "Huawei was poised to fight Apple in the US. Now its fate is uncertain," 26 Aug. 2019 The legal spat began when Delaware North lost its contract to manage Yosemite’s visitor facilities and presented Aramark with a $51 million bill for the intellectual property. Kurtis Alexander,, "What did Yosemite get for the $12 million paid to its former concessionaire?," 22 Aug. 2019 Nike has also aggressively defended the intellectual property associated with Jordan Brand and, by extension, Jordan the player. Michael Mccann,, "How Michael Jordan Could Become Connected to Zion Williamson's Lawsuit," 2 Aug. 2019 The company then argued that taxpayers, aka the National Park Service, would have to pay $51 million to buy the intellectual property attached to the names. Linda Zavoral, The Mercury News, "The Ahwahnee will be back; Yosemite settles lawsuit over hotel names," 15 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'intellectual property.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of intellectual property

1769, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for intellectual property

Last Updated

19 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for intellectual property

The first known use of intellectual property was in 1769

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More Definitions for intellectual property

intellectual property


English Language Learners Definition of intellectual property

law : something (such as an idea, invention, or process) that comes from a person's mind

intellectual property

Legal Definition of intellectual property

see property

More from Merriam-Webster on intellectual property

Britannica English: Translation of intellectual property for Arabic Speakers

Comments on intellectual property

What made you want to look up intellectual property? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


concealed or difficult to comprehend

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