So Long And Thanks For All The Turkey Patents

from the abstract:-gobble-gobble dept

Here in Canada, we gave our proverbial thanks over a month ago, and since all the Americans at Techdirt have taken off for the weekend, I thought I'd take a moment to put together some advice on preparing a great Thanksgiving turkey—with a little help from the USPTO.

If you're tired of the traditional roast, maybe it's time to try a more creative preparation—just be careful you don't run afoul of any patents. Here's an idea: with some skilled knife-work, you can slice a turkey into pieces that resemble various cuts of steak—and that method will only be under patent for another five years!

There are lots of unique recipes out there that call for a deboned turkey. For the inexperienced, it's probably wise to ask your butcher to do this for you—just make sure he doesn't use this method until 2022:

Luckily, there are plenty of open alternatives for the patent-savvy chef. Who needs those fancy new turkey cutlets when you can use this classic "method of preparing turkey ... in the form of a flat elongated slice or slices of raw fowl free from bones, tendons, membranes and skin." Mmmmmm. This patent was granted back in the 60s, so it's long since expired:

Or you could try this "method of preparing barbecued poultry such as turkey which closely simulates barbecued pork", patented in the early 70s and now free for all to follow in handy flow-chart form:

And finally, for the vegetarian in your life (assuming they prefer a lump of vaguely meat-shaped tofu to a nice falafel or something), there's this "method and apparatus for preparing a roast turkey analog (replica) from vegetarian ingredients". A patent was applied for in 2005, but appears not to have been granted...yet. Patents are retroactive to the date of filing, so only use this method if you want to gamble on the USPTO rejecting silly patents (then come play poker with me). All you need to do is make yourself what appears to be some kind of turkey mould, or possibly the sunken city of R'lyeh:

This is an exciting time, with much to be thankful for! Who knows what bold new turkey innovations the patent system will fuel next? A turkey-shaped gravy boat? A way of pulling the bones out from a different angle? A recipe where the sauce goes on after the broth? A toy turkey made out of a pine cone? Ooh, that's a good idea—I should call up the USPTO and... oh, never mind, some other Leigh beat me to it in 1927.



Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 12:07pm

    Happay Thanksgiving

    Wow... nice thanksgiving article.
    that being said...holy crap. A patent on how to cut Turkey a certain way? my head hurts...

     

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    you know me, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 12:21pm

    I like the pinecone craft. My kid and I are going to make it right now.

    It's piracy I tell ya. Lol

    Happy thanksgiving all. ( even OOTB, boB, and average_Joe. )

     

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    identicon
    Nic, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 1:10pm

    Hahaha, omg, I couldn't believe my eyes. Patents on how to make turkey? This world is doomed.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 1:28pm

    What???

    I don't believe it! Do those examiners still work at the USPTO? They ought to be sliced into steaks!

     

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    •  
      identicon
      KC, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 10:38pm

      Re: What???

      I think they still do. The corrupt and rich corporate Americans wanna control the world, by patenting everything on earth as theirs.

      God's work is now the property of the USPTO!!! OMG!!!! Who started all these crap????

       

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        The Real Michael, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 5:34am

        Re: Re: What???

        Don't you know? They've patented everything, including human activity such as dancing, posing, thinking, eating, breathing, etc. Not to mention every shape, color, sound, word, method, invention, object, material, life-form, planet, star, galaxy, and solar system, both discovered and undiscovered, in the universe.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 24th, 2012 @ 8:54am

        Re: Re: What???

        God worked as a turkey butcher?

         

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 2:42pm

    We all know the more patents the more innovation we get. If we didn't allow all these patents to pass that would mean we'd have less innovation. Logic!

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 10:09pm

      Re:

      In a way i suppose you're actually right.

      If these patents were common knowledge, and people cared, they would have to come up with alternate ways of cutting their Turkey.
      Far more likely though is people laughing at the patents with their families over a nice Turkey dinner.

      In reality though, patents like these undermine peoples respect for the patent system, eventually leading to them laughing at the patent system as a whole.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 2:47pm

    If anyone is wondering about this I am here to tell you that I can sell you all a discounted turkey carving license at $7,500 per person.

     

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    Beaker, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 4:32pm

    Hmmm, ... was this article written by the infamous patent shill gene quinn? This "patent genius" posted a similar article on his satirical site - I think-, ipwatchdog.com.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 6:05pm

    https://torrentfreak.com/police-raid-9-year-old-pirate-bay-girl-confiscate-winnie-the-pooh-laptop-12 1122/

    And if you don't pay attention to the patents those people may just send the goons to have a little chat with you.

     

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    justsomebloke (profile), Nov 22nd, 2012 @ 11:12pm

    What else do you expect from the United States Poultry and Turkey Office?

     

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    Sarah Black (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 1:35am

    I am curious to know more...

    A) Which of these Turkey-preparation patents were strictly used for turkeys -- or was the patent just a normal "bird-preparation" patent with the word "turkey" slapped on to it, to present the idea as being "new" and "noble"?

    B) Have these patent holders ever sued (or litigated) over a similar method of bird-preparation so they could have exclusive rights?

    C) How the heck does one enforce such patents? By visiting culinary schools and food dispensaries throughout the year?

     

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    maclypse (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 2:33am

    I remember reading somewhere on techdirt that "you can patent a plow, but not the concept of plowing". Call me crazy, but isn't that EXACTLY what's going on here? They aren't patenting knives, protective gloves, automated butch-o-matics... They are patenting the concept of cutting a piece of meat. How the hell did that get through the patent office? What are they smoking over there, and can I please have some?

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 6:51am

    Don't worry about these patents expiring, our innovators already have the next batch lined up and waiting.

    "How to cut turkey... on a cutting board!"

     

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    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 7:45am

    Without even a note, Missing Mike abandoned you.

    Apparently Mike thinks the world stops when America goes first on holiday, then into shopping frenzy on "Black Friday". He could have re-written a piece or two in advance, or for him a nearly unprecedented original piece just saying best wishes and mentioning he'd be off until Monday, but nope, nothing but Missing Mike.

     

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      Gwiz (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 8:05am

      Re: Without even a note, Missing Mike abandoned you.

      It's really a giant conspiracy, Blue.

      Techdirt has taken a couple of days off leaving you without an outlet for your crazy rants right around the same time you will most likely be with your family.

      Obviously, the whole purpose of this must be to finally get you the help you need. I mean, really, why would Mike want to spend the Holiday with his family or anything like that?

       

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      in_to_the_blue, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 8:14am

      Re: Without even a note, Missing Mike abandoned you.

      WTF you talking about, missing_the_blue, you where gone for a couple of days


      there will be more articles for you to troll, don't worry, you'll live

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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      weneedhelp (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 9:20am

      Re: Without even a note, Missing Mike abandoned you.

      Aww that is soooo, soooo, soooo fucking cute... OOTB misses Mike.

      He is going through Mike withdraw.

      I am too, but I understand the whole work life balance thing.

      Maybe... just maybe... Mike would rather spend time with his kid & wife during the holiday rather than reading your nonsensical bullshit.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 8:19pm

      Re: Without even a note, Missing Mike abandoned you.

      So... exactly what the fuck did you complain about, out_of_the_ass?

       

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  •  
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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 8:24am

    Why am I not surprised to see Eugene Gagliardi's name on that first patent?

     

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    Divide by Zero (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 9:37am

    That first one looks more like carving a dolphin. Those bastards.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 10:53am

    What about patents on cutting the cheese?

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 11:53am

    The federal reserve in st. louis looks at patents and finds, not surprisingly, that patents do not help innovation, but hinder it:

    http://research.stlouisfed.org/wp/2012/2012-035.pdf

    "The vast bulk of patents are not only useless, they donít represent innovation at all."

     

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    Joel, Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 4:38pm

    I'm with the dolphins

     

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    claudiayanputri (profile), Nov 23rd, 2012 @ 10:29pm

    Thanksgiving

    Like this article..thanksgiving :D

     

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 24th, 2012 @ 11:45pm

    Some people in this world believe that giving monopolies to people is a good thing, that vision is dependent on selective memory and tunnel vision to work else it becomes just another absurd bad idea, if we applied the principles of patents or IP law to every aspect of our lifes we wouldn't be able to function.

    Monopolies may have been at some point in time necessary, they are not today, because everybody knows already that cooperation and disclosure is important for us all to advance, the good ol' days when people couldn't trust each other, when it was every men for himself temporary monopolies may have been the only way to get people to cooperate and share information this is not true today in an hyper connected world where groups of people everywhere can group together in cyberspace to solve problems.

    Monopolies should be going away they are evil instruments that cause a lot of problems if they were a good thing we would be applying that silly concept to everything, but we don't we know it is bad, everybody knows that trying to exclude everybody else is not the way to go and this is why, IP law is doomed, it may take some time but eventually it will go away.

     

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