Intellectual Property Rights and Cultural Aspect

Batik dispute is one of the freshest buzzes about intellectual property in indonesia, in which traditional batik craftsmen complained about Malaysia boldly claiming batik as its national heritage. While UNESCO finally settled batik as the original Indonesian heritage, thus securing its intellectual property in indonesia, the feeling of dispute is still present between small groups of people from both nations. The cultural aspects of batik have now become one determining factor in the recognition of intellectual property in indonesia, on the basis that the batik art has been passed down for generations. Plus, there are certain characteristics from the batik styles and motifs that have unique meaning in the culture, an important factor in intellectual property in indonesia, which cannot be claimed by other countries.

Many traditional craftsmen do not understand the process, or simply cannot pay for the fee. There are side effects from this unequal share of intellectual property in indonesia, including the growth of certain hierarchy between batik producers.

Another violation case of intellectual property in Indonesia, which again related to culture, came from Bugis epic myth of Sureq Galigo from South Sulawesi. Surely one of the biggest violation cases of intellectual property in indonesia, Sureq Galigo was adapted into musical theater I La Galigo by a group of foreigners and random Indonesian individuals without any social comeback to Bugis people. The show was successfully performed in various countries, but with one direct kick to the face of intellectual property in indonesia, not a single Bugis people got any profitable comeback from the exploitation of their native epic work. Again, this reflected the failure of government in providing protection of intellectual property in indonesia, especially related to culture.

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