I just read an interesting short article from Prof Gregory Mandel (Temple) titled What is IP For? Experiments in Lay and Expert Perceptions [available here]. Part of the papers includes survey results from both lay individuals and IP professionals who answered the question: What is the Purpose of Intellectual Property Rights? The vast majority of IP Professionals indicated the incentive justification for IP rights: The potential for strong rights sets out a carrot that encourages innovation. Law individuals, on the other hand, more often indicated that IP rights are designed to prevent or sanction plagiarism. Mandel also noted a severe lack-of-knowledge of US adults regarding intellectual property rights — with their study participants only barely outperforming random answers on a basic ten question IP law quiz.