Wednesday, May 06, 2015

How to Fix the Software Patent Mess: Go Back to Basics

Not all patents that are granted foster innovation. Indeed, after experiencing the mischief arising from undeserved privileges bestowed by the British Crown, the U.S. founders deemed the concept of patents to be a public embarrassment.

[...] the authors of the U.S. Constitution thought it worthwhile to accept such embarrassment in return for a patent system that would “promote the useful arts.” The term, useful arts, as used at the time, referred to practical knowledge, in distinction to the performing or fine arts. In crafting the provision for patents found in Article I of the Constitution, they effectively directed that the government be “stingy” in granting patents, issuing such exclusive rights only when it would promote important practical knowledge.

Bradley J Hilbert IP Watchdog

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