EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

11.04.09

Canada’s National Bureau of Economic Research: Patents Harm Poor People (and Help Rich People)

Posted in America, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 7:55 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Out on the streets

Summary: A new report sheds light on the lesser-known impact of patents on society, and sometimes life or death

BILL Gates and Microsoft happen to be some of the biggest fans (and investors) of pharmaceutical patents, which according to a new study from the Canadian authorities are actually leading to death of the world’s poor while vainly pretending to help (it’s no secret that today's patent system offers protection to the rich class). IP Watch has just a summary of the study:

Canada’s National Bureau of Economic Research today released a report on the relationship between patent protection for pharmaceuticals and investment in development of new drugs since the negotiation of the 1994 World Trade Organization Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). The NBER report “Investments in Pharmaceuticals Before and After TRIPS” found that patent protection is associated with increases in research and development in developed countries, but “the introduction of patents in developing countries has not been followed by greater investment.”

We have already shown that the head of the USPTO acknowledges that patents are a “20-year monopoly”. Using the same logic, one blogger adopts a fantastic path of exploration, which goes under the headline “And the monopoly goes to…” (like “the Oscar goes to…”).

I’m not a great fan of patents, not because I’m against innovation, but because I don’t believe the patent system (especially in the United States) has kept up with, or modernized, in a way that actually encourages the widest possible public benefit at the lowest cost in the least amount of time. In other words, what we’ve learned from open source is that different types of competitive pressures in transparent markets can do as much if not more than centrally conferred monopolies over a given idea, implementation, or design.

Indeed, Free software (or “open source” as the author calls it) truly revolutionised development for the betterment of society as a whole, mostly capitalising on the information liberation facilitated by the Internet (and especially the World Wide Web). It is a democratising force that also promotes peer production, as the Linux Foundation proudly calls it. That’s productive capitalism at work.

Based on this news report from Wired, some people are still so selfish and greedy that they want a monopoly on human genes. This practice is fortunately being challenged by a judge now.

A federal judge ruled Monday that a lawsuit can move forward against the Patent and Trademark Office and the research company that was awarded exclusive rights to human genes known to detect early signs of breast and ovarian cancer.

Those who think that patenting life is outrageous ought to look at this new nugget of information.

Pepsi Told To Pay Over A Billion Dollars For ‘Stealing’ The Idea For Bottled Water

[...]

First, $1.26 billion? For the “idea” of filtered bottled water? And for a lawsuit filed nearly thirty years after the alleged conversation? Nearly fifteen years after the product came to market? Yeah, that makes sense…

It makes a lot of sense for people who use the patent system as their welfare system.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

3 Comments

  1. Jose_X said,

    November 4, 2009 at 5:58 pm

    Gravatar

    >> “the introduction of patents in developing countries has not been followed by greater investment.”

    The intent is for the big dogs to hold that innovation growth rate down to a manageable level, so patents get introduced.

    We see a flourishing of ideas, but the established dogs see threats. They also see a resource, a swelling fountain, whose output needs to be monetized. To pull this off, they need to share some of the spoils with “small inventors”. It puts a lovable face on the filthy patent business.

    http://lwn.net/Articles/360428/

    Jose_X Reply:

    Some degree of government subsidy can be useful, but a flat rate 20 year monopoly on broadly-scoped software ideas is not very useful to very many and can be used in an extremely stifling manner against the majority and, in particular, against FOSS.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Yes, Microsoft has its share of pet “small inventors”, e.g. Daniel Doll-Steinberg and Tribeka. See this post for details.

What Else is New


  1. The European Patent Office Goes Down a Very Slippery Slope by Promoting and Defending Patents on Life/Nature in Defiance of Parliament and the EPC

    The reluctance to obey the law at the EPO is very much noteworthy; things have gotten so bad that nature and life itself become 'corporate property' or monopoly



  2. Software Patents Are in a Freefall in Courts Worldwide, But the EPO Keeps Granting and Promoting These

    Courts are tearing down abstract patents, but this has neither deterred nor discouraged António Campinos from coming up with new buzzwords and acronyms by which to promote these and grant these to applicants



  3. Team UPC Excited Over Nothing, President Campinos Rarely Even Mentions UPC Anymore

    President Campinos started his term with UPC advocacy, but he has barely even mentioned the acronym since then. In fact, it seems increasingly unlikely that UPC can ever materialise with just month left before Brexit



  4. Battistelli's Bodyguard Has Been Arrested, But Battistelli Should Join Him

    Alexandre Benalla and Vincent Crase end up in prison; will French investigators bother checking Benalla's past with Battistelli as well as other Battistelli scandals (incidents of law-breaking and of corruption)?



  5. Links 22/2/2019: GNOME 3.32 Beta 2 Released and Fedora 30 Flicker-Free Boot

    Links for the day



  6. Links 20/2/2019: digiKam 6.0.0, Cockpit 188, Mesa 19.0 RC5

    Links for the day



  7. How Long Can the EPO Bend the Rules Before the Avalanche of Invalid Software Patents?

    A 35 U.S.C. § 101/SCOTUS moment in Europe will likely squash loads of abstract European Patents granted by the EPO; shouldn’t the EPO foresee this and immediately cease granting such obviously bogus patents, whose main beneficiary is a bunch of patent trolls?



  8. Battistelli Trashed 223 Millions (of Stakeholders' Euros) on a System That Destroyed the European Patent Office and Made Few Private Corporations a Lot Richer

    A quarter of a billion euros later the EPO finally admits in private that this was a massive failure



  9. Links 19/2/2019: Mesa 18.3.4, Cutelyst 2.7.0, Plasma Pass 1.0.0

    Links for the day



  10. What Happened in the United States Now Happens in Europe: Lots of Patents Turn Out to Be Bunk, Fake, Bogus, Invalid and Thus Worthless

    Worthless patents — not opposition to such patents — are the greatest threat to the legitimacy of the patent system, yet bureaucrats fail to heed the warning in the name of short-term profits



  11. Stephen Rowan's and Nellie Simon's Letter to EPO Staff: eDossier Has “Not Reached the Required Quality Levels.”

    We've just commented on it; here is the raw letter in full, explaining that eDossier and related frameworks will be abandoned entirely and indefinitely within less than a fortnight



  12. Search Matters Not at the European Patent Office

    The EPO has found out that "System Battistelli" has been catastrophic for the quality of patents; it stops short of openly admitting it as such and in fact it keeps the message strictly confidential (explained to insiders, who will inevitably notice a system being abandoned)



  13. António Campinos Still Needs to Undo Battistelli's Union-Busting Activities at the EPO

    Solidarity and support for Laurent Prunier are needed because the new French president lacks empathy even for fellow Frenchmen whose sole 'crime' is that they represented EPO staff



  14. Links 18/2/2019: Linux 5.0 RC7, RISC-V Spreading Fast

    Links for the day



  15. António Campinos Still Needs to Hold Team Battistelli Accountable for Illegally Bringing Weapons to the EPO

    It is imperative that, in order to repair the reputation of the European Patent Office (EPO), António Campinos should pursue accountability for the managers who brought Benalla and firearms to the Office (very serious breach of German law, jail sentence included)



  16. Links 17/2/2019: Compiz 0.9.14.0, Geary 0.13.0, GNU FreeDink 109.6, Debian 9.8, Texinfo 6.6

    Links for the day



  17. Amazon's Patent Policy Should be Enough of a Reason to Boycott Amazon and AWS

    There are many things to criticise Amazon and its founder for; but rarely does the mainstream media bring up the company's appalling patent policy



  18. Don't Use Cloudflare Because You Impose This on People Who Least Want It

    Reasons to stop making the World Wide Web so heavily dependent on some dubious companies like Cloudflare, which already has a worrisome track record



  19. How Many/Most EPO Examiners View 'President' António Campinos

    Based on what readers/insiders have told us, there’s a prevalent perception that António Campinos is afraid of (thus controlled/directed by) Bergot, who is still doing Battistelli’s biddings at the European Patent Office (EPO)



  20. Techrights' Priorities Over the Years

    An old priority of ours, eliminating software patents in the United States, is no longer quite so relevant because such patents are perishing in US courts, with or without outside intervention such as activism



  21. Courts in Disagreement: Warning on Wrongly-Granted European Patents and the Looming Collapse of All Software Patents in Europe

    By devaluing patents and reducing their perceived worth (as is happening in China and Europe) patent offices risk decreasing participation in the very system they fundamentally depend on



  22. Computing Will Not Necessarily Make the World a Better Place

    The vision of "happy world" (because each person has a so-called 'smart' 'phone') is a yuppie delusion that overlooks business models and corporate interests



  23. EPO Grants Fake European Patents -- Including Software Patents -- and European Courts Keep Rejecting These

    The demise of the legitimacy or perceived validity of European Patents is measurable and the system isn't the same anymore; the EPO makes no effort to change this for the better, either



  24. Nobody But Patent Trolls and Litigators Will Benefit From the Corruption of the European Patent Office

    IAM, EPO leadership, Iancu and the rest of these raiders are enabling corruption and facilitating or supporting a racket; that money they collect comes at the expense of future victims of their "clients" or "customers" (that's what they call applicants, to whom they grant dubious monopolies as a matter of urgency)



  25. WSL is a Misleading Acronym/Name Because There's No Linux in It, It's Just Windows

    When Microsoft says "Linux" (as in "Microsoft loves Linux") what it actually means is Windows and/or Azure



  26. Links 16/2/2019: Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS, PyCharm 2019.1 EAP 4

    Links for the day



  27. Outline/Index of the Alexandre Benalla/Battistelli Scandal

    Our writings about the scandals implicating Benalla and the European Patent Office (EPO)



  28. Reading Techrights on a Mobile Device Running Android

    A new Android app for reading this site is being tested



  29. Links 14/2/2019: “I Love Free Software Day” and Mesa 19.0 RC4 Released

    Links for the day



  30. “EPO Lawlessness Again”

    Blackberry uses bogus European Patents (on software) for lawsuits; "all of them pure software patents. Patents on programs for computers as such," as Müller puts it


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts