Blockchains, Smart Contracts, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations and the Law
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Blockchains, Smart Contracts, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations and the Law

Edited by Daniel Kraus, Thierry Obrist and Olivier Hari

The growth of Blockchain technology presents a number of legal questions for lawyers, regulators and industry participants alike. Primarily, regulators must allow Blockchain technology to develop whilst also ensuring it is not being abused. This book addresses the challenges posed by various applications of Blockchain technology, such as cryptocurrencies, smart contracts and initial coin offerings, across different fields of law. Contributors explore whether the problems posed by Blockchain and its applications can be addressed within the present legal system or whether significant rethinking is required.
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Chapter 9: Blockchains: aspects of intellectual property law

Daniel Kraus and Charlotte Boulay

Abstract

Blockchains are at the source of numerous innovations, be it in the insurance, the financial or the distribution sector, many of which are very promising. However, from the moment innovative technologies appear the issue of the stimulation of their development arises. Most of the time, blockchain-related innovations are developed in an open-source or free software framework. Nevertheless, more and more patents have been filed on blockchain applications. Hence, how are the philosophies driving blockchain communities and intellectual property compatible? Are there any risks that arise from the filing of patents on the developments of blockchain-based technologies and business methods? And finally, are blockhains going to revolutionalize the intellectual property system itself? These are the issues that the present chapter attempts to deal with.

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