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Against Monopoly

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Monopoly corrupts. Absolute monopoly corrupts absolutely.





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Bilski oral argument highlights (or rather, lowlights...)

Just to give you an idea of how radical the IP maximalists have become, check out these excerpts from today's Supreme Court oral argument in the Bilksi case (which may help decide the scope of patent law in terms of what can or can not be patented):

JUSTICE GINSBURG: But you say you would say tax avoidance methods are covered, just as the process here is covered. So an estate plan, tax avoidance, how to resist a corporate takeover, how to choose a jury, all of those are patentable?

MR. JAKES: They are eligible for patenting as processes, assuming they meet the other statutory requirements.

JUSTICE BREYER: So that would mean that every -- every businessman -- perhaps not every, but every successful businessman typically has something. His firm wouldn't be successful if he didn't have anything that others didn't have. He thinks of a new way to organize. He thinks of a new thing to say on the telephone. He thinks of something. That's how he made his money. And your view would be -- and it's new, too, and it's useful, made him a fortune -- anything that helps any businessman succeed is patentable because we reduce it to a number of steps, explain it in general terms, file our application, granted?

MR. JAKES: It is potentially patentable, yes.

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JUSTICE BREYER: You know, I have a great, wonderful, really original method of teaching antitrust law, and it kept 80 percent of the students awake. They learned things.[Audience laughter.] It was fabulous. And I could probably have reduced it to a set of steps and other teachers could have followed it. That you are going to say is patentable, too?

MR. JAKES: Potentially.

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JUSTICE SCALIA: You know, you mention that there are all these -- these new areas that didn't exist in the past because of modern business and what-not, but there are also areas that existed in the past that don't exist today. Let's take training horses. Don't you think that -- that some people, horse whisperers or others, had some, you know, some insights into the best way to train horses? And that should have been patentable on your theory.

MR. JAKES: They might have, yes.

JUSTICE SCALIA: Well, why didn't anybody patent those things?

MR. JAKES: I think our economy was based on industrial process.

JUSTICE SCALIA: It was based on horses, for Pete's sake. You -- I would really have thought somebody would have patented that.

MR. JAKES: There are also issues with enforcement. I can't really answer why somebody wouldn't have. There are teaching methods that were patented. There are a number of them that we've included in our brief where there were patents issued for teaching methods, and I don't think that we've had a serious enforcement problem with people being sued for using teaching methods. But there have been those people who have sought to patent them rather than keep them as secrets or just use them.

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In the world view of the IP maximalist, even a method for "picking a jury" is patentable and subject to a monopoly. Imagine that you are a criminal defendant and your attorney has strategies for picking jurors that might be favorable to your arguments. Unfortunately however, another high-priced law firm which regularly makes large political donations and is located on the opposite coast has a "patent" on it. It refuses to let you choose the jurors in the manner you wish without forking over a fee which you can't afford (assuming they decide to license it to you at all....).

Very scary stuff.


Comments

Scary? That's nothing.

There's a new privilege on the block and I don't think you've noticed it.

1) Copyright: The privilege to exclude others from performing or making copies 2) Patent: The privilege to exclude others from utilising a similar design 3) 3Strikes: The privilege to exclude others from accessing/utilising the Internet

What's more this new privilege doesn't require evidence to prosecute, it only requires evidence for a tribunal - to find grounds for an appeal against the assumption of guilt upon 3 accusations.

How would you transfer the equivalent of private ownership of the Internet to publishing corporations?

Easy. Grant them the privilege of excluding anyone (competitors and anyone else they didn't like).

Moreover, unlike having to get a court order to evict someone from your property, they have it easier. They just say "You're trespassing" three times and then flick an off switch. The victim then has to waste time borrowing someone else's Internet connection (who isn't going to be unworried by this) to wail about it.

What do you think is going to be done with such power?

Extortion: unfavourable deals will be offered instead of disconnection. Connections with very high '3strikes exempt' license fees will be offered to demonstrate that people don't remain disconnected, simply 'no longer trusted' with an unlicensed connection.

ACTA represents the corporations' effective control over the Internet. They don't need to control the technology, they simply need the power to exclude anyone they don't like.

This happened three centuries ago when the Stationers' guild decided to eliminate their competition from independents (aka pirates and seditionists). Today it's pirates, counterfeiters, terrorists and paedophiles - bogeymen to distract from 'independent/free publishers such as the FSF, and citizens with freedom of speech'.

Only criminals need freedom, upstanding citizens will be content consumers.

So, when they say "Graduated response" this means "Get the fuck off my property!"

Quote below from Justices Hear Patent Case on Protecting the Abstract, New York Times article.

"During the one-hour oral argument on Monday afternoon, the Bilski patent and its ilk also seemed to sit poorly with Justice Anthony M. Kennedy and Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who raised questions that suggested an interest in narrowing the scope of patents to more squarely focus on physical inventions and not abstract ideas and processes."

Looks like the Times is actually reporting for a change. Usually the paper, when it comes to reporting news dealing with intellectual property, writes biased articles that are pro intellectual property. Once again some sanity is surfacing at the Times.

You know, I actually see the outlined exchange as ridicule. I think Jakes did us a huge favor by outlining how far these patent crabs will go to suppress even to most fundamental social advancement.
You know, I actually see the outlined exchange as ridicule. I think Jakes did us a huge favor by outlining how far these patent crabs will go to suppress even to most fundamental social advancement.
Here's a tid-bit that seems to have been overlooked in patent arguments.

"MR. JAKES: It's very much related to our current economy and state of technology, with computers and the Internet and the free flow of information. But that's what --

JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR: But a patent limits the free flow of information. It requires licensing fees and other steps, legal steps. So you can't argue that your definition is improving the free flow of information."

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So Jakes claims patents are useful to society, because patents makes the technology "visible". The only problem, society is not able to freely use the technology. So how does that constitute progress?

Patents are best thought of as an electric motor with an efficiency of 1% that draws 50 amps from the car's battery in order to provide a feeble amount of power the wheels undriven by the combustion engine.

To the layman it seems the motor must contribute to the vehicle's progress.

Unfortunately a democracy is 99% laymen, and it is thus easy for motors to argue themselves into a position of power.

To those few engineers and thermodynamists it's a nightmare. One cannot argue that the motor does not provide some power to the wheels, and yet it still serves as an overall brake.

Wow, I didn't expect this at all, but the line of questioning from all the justices is almost making me giddy. I'm waiting for someone to bring up the idea of patenting a method to get in SCOTUS. Maybe I'm biased in my reading, but it seems like they're openly ridiculing Mr. Jakes at every turn. I just hope they realize it's idiots like Jakes who are currently running the asylum, and they better darn make a ruling that puts a stop to that. By pointing out all the ridiculous granted method patents, that show just how corrupt the patent system has become, I almost think Jakes is making a better case for a beneficial broad SCOTUS ruling than anyone trying to defend the lower court decision.

In the world view of the IP maximalist, even a method for "picking a jury" is patentable and subject to a monopoly. Imagine that you are a criminal defendant and your attorney has strategies for picking jurors that might be favorable to your arguments. gastrite enantematosa
口頭弁論のハイライトは、よく表示されます。租税回避法に関する私のresearch papersを持つだけの時間。

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