The Cupping Test Cups in the TV Drama “Gold Leaf”and Their Value-added Processes of Intellectual Property Rights

Supervisor, Taiwan Association of Certificated Valuators and Analysts Board.


The TV drama Gold Leaf is based on the history of a tea factory in Beipu owned by the largest tea exporter in Taiwan in the 1950s, Chiang A-Hsin. During that time, British merchants were exporting tea to Europe, and the price of tea was higher than gold. The male protagonist in the series grew wealthy by making tea in collaboration with British tea merchants for export. However, there were many valuable intellectual property rights in the tea factory, including tea processing methods, fermentation and storage techniques, quality inspections, tea factory management, and other inventions or design patents. Moreover, other elements such as novel tea set designs, advertising and marketing, tea set names, production factories, and origins can also enhance the brand’s influence and increase its value of intellectual property rights. Nonetheless, at the time, intellectual property rights were not valued in developing countries. In contrast, famous porcelain teaware manufacturers in Japan and Europe applied for several patents or trademarks to protect their intellectual property rights. Even though these patents have expired, the brand value persists.

Using the TV drama Gold Leaf as an example, this study explores the value-added development of transforming the “cultural” content of the Taiwanese tea industry into “intellectual property rights.” It illustrates how the prop, a white porcelain test cup featured in the series, can increase its shared co-creation brand value in the creative economy through media such as TV dramas, serving as a reference for crowdfunding or potential investors.

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