Bonum Certa Men Certa

Companies Like Apple and ​Microsoft Benefit the Most From Patents as It's a System of Protectionism



An inventors paper
Original paper [PDF}



Summary: By conflating inventors with patent holders, or perpetuating the myth that patents are all about innovation rather than protectionism, various sites maintain a status quo of monopoly or oligopoly

THE other day we saw IAM distorting some new study for its own purposes (IAM promotes patent trolls and so-called 'monetisation'). We responded to that. Patents and inventions are not the same. Kevin Drum from Mother Jones (pseudo-progressive site) has just done the same. The underlying message (or take-home message) is that the patent system is a system for (and by) rich people. It's no secret (or taboo subject). Many people frankly admit and accept that patents are a rich people's game of protectionism and not about innovation at all. Sometimes it does just 'happen' to encourage some innovation (depending on the domain/discipline), but that's not why patents exist these days, putting aside the genesis of this whole system. To quote Drum:



Over at the Equality of Opportunity Project, a team of researchers has written a new paper that tries to explain some of the root sources of innovation. In particular, what kinds of kids are likely to become inventors? The researchers study this by looking at patent applications and then linking the names with a tax database in order to tease out the demographics of children who grow up to become inventors. I’m not 100 percent convinced that patent applications are a good way of measuring innovation, but it’s a start.


I had a quick glance at this paper last week. It's very long. It certainly seems like many people distort it for their own purposes/agenda/lobbying. The EPO is nowadays 'buying' studies (i.e. corrupting academia) for its lobbying.

For an actual understanding of what's in that study, may we suggest people read the original rather than rely on the patent trolls' lobby or neoliberals such as Drum?

"The EPO is nowadays 'buying' studies (i.e. corrupting academia) for its lobbying."Look at this week's news. Apple fan/advocacy sites mentioned new Apple patents several days ago and again yesterday (December 19th). Lots of prior art here. These are not Apple 'inventions' [sic] at all! Just another load of hot air and hype. This is so typical. The same is true for Microsoft, which pursued patents on a dual-screen foldable tablet -- something I saw many years ago [1, 2, 3, 4]. Why are these patents being granted? Are the examiners at the USPTO eager to please a "frequent customer"? It doesn't take more than a couple of Web searches to find prior art. But then again, as we said at the start, those patents aren't granted for innovation but for protectionism. It's for rich people. Or countries like Switzerland where the relative cost of patents is low.

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