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01.20.10

Patents or Life

Posted in Europe, Law, Patents at 3:42 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Contradiction between values of patents (mortality) and values of sharing (morality)

ON MANY occasions in the past, Boycott Novell showed that patents are costing many lives. When life is put at greater risk someone can make a profit. Here is another new proof that patents work in reverse to life. For background:

Mike Mellace only has to look at his 4-year-old son Ammanuel, brought home from an Ethiopian orphanage a year ago, to know what it means to save a child from malnutrition.

Here is TechDirt’s interpretation of the above:

Patents Being Used To Keep Starving Children From Getting Therapeutic Food Paste

We’ve seen way too many stories of patents being used to hold back medical treatments or drugs in communities that need them most, and now a few of you have sent in this troubling story of how a French company, Nutriset, has been using patents to block competition with its therapeutic food paste for malnourished children. Apparently, the company came up with “a mixture of peanut butter, powdered milk, sugar and vegetable oil fortified with 40 vitamins and minerals,” called it Plumpy’nut, patented it, and started offering it to various aid agencies. Apparently, it works great, but anyone else who creates anything remotely similar comes under attack from Nutriset’s lawyers, who apparently like saving children only when there’s no competition from anyone who might do it more cheaply or more efficiently.

Against Monopoly says, based on the Mises professionals, that a reform of the system is needed:

As I note in my article “Radical Patent Reform Is Not on the Way,” Mises Daily (Oct. 1, 2009), there is a growing clamor for reform of patent (and copyright) law, due to the increasingly obvious injustices resulting from these intellectual property (IP) laws.

3 weeks ago we showed why ACTA would kill people, so people must start getting involved in the ACTA process. “For ACTA trolls,” says the president of the FFII, “use the Lisbon treaty Art218.10 and ask the European Parliament to be fully informed about negotiations…”

He must be referring to “ACTA trolls” like Paul Rübig [1, 2] and Pedro Valesco-Martins.

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