November 27, 2017
The Society of British and International Design (SBID) has launched the SBID Intellectual Property (IPP) initiative to mark the new campaign to prevent IP theft in the interior design industry. Developed in association with TM – Eye, with the aim of assisting the industry to obtain objective evidence of design ownership, the venture updates the archaic discourse on intellectual property in design and will raise awareness of what designers need to do to properly protect their work. The issue is one of stolen ideas after a commercial presentation, without consent or a fee, a problem that has plagued the interior design industry and left owners/creators feeling like they had no legal support to refer to. This could typically be the theft of ideas created in an interior designed space or product. This has not only been an ongoing problem for business investors in all creative sectors of design and manufacture, but also a problem for consumers who are put at risk, completely unaware when they purchase a look-alike product, to find a poorly manufactured copy without tested safety marques that could cause untold damage to property.
The launch was attended by key industry stakeholders, both in the design arena but also in legislation and policing including, Harold Tillman CBE, Past president of the British Fashion Council, Suzi Sendama, Associate from Mishcon de Reya LLP and Detective Chief Superintendent, Peter O’Doherty from the City of London Police who spoke about the impact and scope of Intellectual Property crime on design rights. At present, the perception of legislation on design rights is often compounded with trademark offences which is not only complex and difficult to comprehend but is also almost impossible to pursue compensation in the event of a criminal case/investigation.
Supported by the Intellectual Property Office, Police Intellectual Property Unit and the Department of International Trade, SBID announced plans to launch an IP register which will allow design owners to register their ideas from inception, giving them the confidence and support they need to bring a criminal charge against IP theft.
This initiative claims to differ from all other IP registrations and destinations because it has identified and provided the solution for enforcing punishment for such criminality, ultimately providing a route to recovery or prevention. This will bring interior design in line with the fashion and music industries as the creative industries come together to protect the commercial value of brand IP. The SBID awareness campaign will begin in January 2018 in advance of the International IP register later in the year.