Intellectual property: definition of the day
Intellectual Property is a broad class of property, similar to ‘real estate’ (land), and ‘chattels’ (movable physical goods). It generally includes four very different kinds of rights: Patent, Copyright, Trademark, and trade secrets (which is traditionally found within the unfair competition heading).
Patents and copyrights are regulated by Congress, through the Patent and Trademark Office. Trademarks are regulated both by the US Congress and by State laws. Trade secrets are primarily regulated at the State level.