A patent is a set of exclusive rights granted to the innovator to guard his interests for the next two decades or so, when nobody else can copy the item or has to pay royalties to do so. The entire framework behind this was to guarantee the innovator gets monitory and first mover advantages for his research and development, to make certain folks have incentives to do more research and new technologies keep coming in markets for the welfare of humanity. Little did the creator of patents law knew that it will be used to hinder the growth, create monopolies, utilized to backfire/compress or terminate competitors and as a medium to earn riches.
But, it has degraded to your level when a company can just discuss out extra features and file Patent A Product for the similar. The end result is many companies earning millions and millions not since they manufacture such quality products, just because these were the first one to consider a concept. Today’s MNCs don’t shy away in extracting exorbitant amount in royalty fees, licensing fees, court claims and settlements. Just one cool product results in usage of lots of old patents (using their licensing fees) and introduction of two dozen more patents. A patent is not really meant to be for how you will scroll content with an iPhone or the amount of image processors in a single Kodak camera. Of course the patent can be for the bit of hardware, the circuit or perhaps the code written. But, if a person else is able to produce similar or better output using their own code, hardware or circuits, that does not get them to prone to pay for the other company.
Legal requirements firms, not understanding any nuances of technologies, blindly approves patents and helps to create a ground for patent wars.
Its unsurprising to sees the world’s largest and oldest manufacturer Nokia, fighting with new niche premium mobile manufacturer Apple over the patent wars. Nokia sued Apple over utilization of signalling techniques, Apple fired back over the usage of scrollbars and Nokia again filed a whole new lawsuit against Apple’s iPad. The war like the situation when Kodak sued Apple and Apple countersued Kodak.
This war is made for patents, but, it is not because these companies are hindering innovation or were not able to recover their research and development charges as a result of other’s patent infringement. This war is totally based upon greed, the greed top earn more and eat each other’s profit share. Finally, both can do an out of court agreement, something much like, you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.
Maybe American companies could also learn from these MNCs and begin building a pile of patents. Like that the large telecoms can just sit back and earn royalties. Poor Bharti Airtel, if Mr. Sunil Mittal had filed Inventhelp for caller tunes or missed call alert service, Airtel might have crossed all of their barriers in terms of growth along with been world’s largest telecom company. On the similar lines, if Infosys had patented its global delivery model, it may have easily axed the competing firms along with ruled the offshore IT business. Regardless of how ridiculously stupid the aforementioned ideas sound like, the US patent history is full of such applications and the majority of them are accepted also.
So, whenever we knew day 1 day we could not manufacture even board games without paying royalties, we might have patented a dice, which was used and discussed in India considering that the times of Mahabharata.
What’s urgently required is formation of the good panel which does a thorough investigation before approving patent and constantly reviews any approved patent. In the event the company filing the patent, don’t use it within next 3-five years, the patent becomes null and void, if patent seems irrelevant after 3-5 years then it should be discarded. Exactly the same ought to be done just in case where company filing patent has recovered all research and development expenses related to patent and all sorts of past unsuccessful trials and it has already made handsome profits with similar. When the patent filing company keeps licensing their patents to many other companies, the patent should expire much earlier than the 20 year span. Even though one of the above rules are materialized, the patent market is going to be a lot more regulated and tznwus won’t be such high exploitation in the How To Patent.
So, when RiceTec applied a patent for Basmati rice, the first question could have been that why they would like to make use of the word Basmati, the premium American and Pakistani rice breed, which can be most favored and expensive. A further research could have said that their genetic breed has qualities of extra long length, width and fragrance which can be all related to the traditional Basmati breed harvested near Himalayas. After such findings, they might have been interrogated on the use of brands ‘Texmati’ and ‘Kasmati’ (name sounding similar to Basmati) labeled to deceive buyers. Once the entire case was developed, the business should have been forced to stop selling any breed of rice altogether.
But, not one of the above action points is ever going to be utilized in a land where any corrupt company can lobby the federal government ruling the land and force them to add new injunctions in law or amend legal requirements within their favor.