Thursday, November 10, 2005

What is the purpose of the patent system?

Many people try to suggest that the patent system is to reward people who create a commercialized product. It isn't. The purpose of the patent system is to promote disclosure of inventions. Period.

From a different place:

Of --The purpose of the patent system is not as you claim, but it is to encourage innovation that is beneficial to our economy. That's it's only purpose. Thus, if the ideas are being held back, then it's clearly *failing*.--

the purpose of the patent system is to promote disclosure of inventions. It is not, and never has been, to encourage innovation that is "beneficial to our economy." Capitalists do that. The USPTO does not check to see if an invention is economically viable, or could be economically viable. We do not want a government body to be doing that.

Of your "final point," in a system wherein we are trying to promote disclosure by offering the right to exclude for a limited period, we don't want people wasting resources by doing what someone has already done, and published, previously. People working totally independently to rediscover the wheel are not beneficial to the economy.

There probably are some bad patents (an antigravity patent issued in Nov. 05). Getting better trained examiners and giving more time (and database access) will help. However, some of the complaints don't seem to cut it. For all the discussion of the Eolas/Berkeley patent, the thing survived re-examination, and we have two academics (one from Princeton, one from Michigan)to thank for that. The W3C analysis of the Eolas patent was pathetically sad.

Of the "obviousness" discussion, some of the arguments are simply not consistent with what is actually going on. See my
article, "Patent Reform 2005: Can you hear me, Major Tom?" and discussion on IPBiz.

1 Comments:

Blogger Dave said...

Very good post! Hopefully, more people will read it!

Dave's District

5:23 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home