Patently Silly

20 July 2006 at 10:55 am Leave a comment

| Peter Klein |

It’s a bit unfair to interrupt our serious discussion of intellectual property by taking cheap shots at the US Patent Office, but I can’t resist plugging Patently Silly by Daniel Wright and Alex Eben Meyer. You’d be surprised what the USPTO considers unique, useful, and non-obvious.

(NB: When I worked at the CEA a few years ago, I once asked a USPTO official for his perspective on the marginal benefits and costs of various patent characteristics (length, breadth, etc.), including the pros and cons of having a patent system at all. He literally could not understand what I was talking about. When I brought up the possibility that a patent examiner could make a mistake, and grant legal protection for an invention that was not unique or useful, he stated flatly: “We don’t make those mistakes.”)

Entry filed under: - Klein -, Classical Liberalism, Institutions.

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