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This chapter discusses five issues: the availability of patent protection for computer hardware and for computer software (computer programs); copyright in computer software; databases and the sui generis right; the Internet; and semiconductor chip protection.


L. Bently, B. Sherman, D. Gangjee, and P. Johnson

This chapter focuses on unregistered design right as a means to protect designs in the UK under Part III of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. It begins by considering the subsistence of the UK unregistered design right, with emphasis on the requirement that there be a ‘design’ and exclusions to design protection by the unregistered design right. It then discusses issues of ownership, duration, and infringement as well as the defences available in cases of infringement of unregistered designs. The chapter concludes with a brief explanation of sui generis right involving semiconductor chips.