Tuesday, December 7, 2010
(24) Patents impede growth of progress ?
This is a chat I had with a Mr Tan who do not believe in PATENTS. He feels having a patent on a new invention actually impede growth rather than promote progress in life. He said this world will be a better place if we make do without this piece of intellectual property.
You can certainly file patents on ideas and concepts in certain foreign countries. It does not even need to be demonstrable.
To file a patent for a car that run on water, your 'claims' will not be a car that run on water. Your claims will be how you make your car to run on water. The title of your patent have no value. It is all in the 'claims' you made. The 'claims' are usually all the ' how' and not 'what'.
If they do not need to spend any money on copying your idea, means your idea is not particularly inventive anyway. So, your patent is a frivolous one that managed to sneak past the censors.
I do not apprehend this statement. Even though if I do, I will probably not agree with you. Say, like Edison. He spend years inventing the light bulbs. Spend lots of time money in his 9999 trials and failures. One fine day, he got it. He got the right material for the filament, a vacuum space in the bulb etc etc... and file a patent on all these, which without them, the bulb won't work.
If he did not have a patent on these claims, someone will just come along and copy and start manufacturing them without the cost of having going thru the 9999 trials and failures. Does this mean that his invention will be less inventive and frivolous in anyway?
However, turning this the other way, if they copied your idea and made certain modifications/improvements, you've benefited from their additional R&D costs without having to spend a sen.
It may be good for the product, good for the industry, good for mankind but may not be good for me and my company and business. If I am working for the United Nation, an NGO or some Humanitarian Organization and all my R&D funds are paid by them, then no problem. If I am running a business, a commercial business and is profit oriented, then it will not be good for me.
All the money spend on R&D are consider as investments. As such, I expect returns of profit. If there is no guarantee of IP protection on my findings, why do I want to spend the money on the R&D? If I and the others do not want to venture into the R&D, how is the technology gonna progress? The whole industry gonna collapse and we gonna be back into caveman.
Err, I'm talking about what's good for the market, creativity, business *and* society.
Let's get real, patents, inventions, R&D etc etc are all about 'business' and money. If there is no money to be make, nobody will be inventing and researching anymore. And there will nothing for the market, creativity will not be encourge, no business will evolue and the society will suffer.
All you've talked about is making profit from a patent. I think we both agree that just having a patent doesn't make you rich.
You are correct, having 'a' patent will not make you rich. But having 'the' patent can.
The thing is, you can make money in a world with or without patents.
Again, I have to agree with you on this. But, having a patent will give you the advantage over the others. It is not a neccesity but a privilage. In the business world, any advantage is an advantage. Winners are often win by a nose. They spend millions to develop swimsuit which can cut 0.01 second off the time.
(this is true even if you just license your patent).
If you do not have a patent, how can you licence your patent ? Do you expect the Pasar Malam pirated DVD vendors to go to Universal Studio with a cheque and tell them "Hey, this is your royalty from the gains I made from selling your movies" ?
It will be of communism philosophy to share everything we have with each other for the sake of the society, nation and mankind... Or is it the 3 Muskeeters ? One for all and all for one ?
- 2nd March 2009