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What is a rights holder?

A rights holder is a person, organisation or company that is the legal owner or holder of certain rights to intellectual property or a work. These rights may include copyrights, trademark rights, patent rights, licensing rights or other forms of intellectual property.

1 **Copyright:** In the case of a work such as music, literature, art or software, the author is the original rights holder. He or she is the creator of the work and inherently owns the copyright. However, the author can sell or licence his rights to third parties.

2 **Licensing:** A rightholder can license certain rights in his intellectual property to other parties. This allows the licensee to use the work in a certain way, while the rights holder retains control over the use or receives remuneration.

3 **Trademark rights:** In the area of trademarks, a company or organisation can act as the rights holder. They have the exclusive right to use a particular mark or logo to identify and distinguish products or services from others.

4 **Patent rights:** In the case of inventions or innovative technologies, the patent holder is the owner of the rights. Patent rights give the owner the exclusive right to make, use and sell the patented invention for a certain period of time.

5 **Contractual documents:** The rights of a rights holder are often set out in legal agreements or documents, such as licence agreements, copyright registrations, trademark applications or patent certificates.

6 **Protection and enforcement:** A rights holder has the right to protect and enforce its rights by taking legal action against individuals or organisations that infringe its rights without permission.

In the business world, rights holders are critical to maintaining control of intellectual property, protecting it, generating revenue and respecting the rights of others
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