And Now Europe Feels The Need To Catch Up To China And The US In The Self-Destructive Patent Race

from the bad-news-for-innovation dept

Well, you had to know this was coming. When you make the very dangerous mistake of assuming that patents are a proxy for innovation, then you get concerned when other countries/regions are getting more patents than you are. We've already covered how China is ramping up their patent approvals in an attempt to create an economic weapon against the West ("sorry, you can't sell those computers here, they violate the patent of this Shanghai firm..."). And, of course, the US has stupidly fallen into line and started approving patents willy-nilly to keep up. So, over in Europe, overreacting bureaucrats are about to make the same mistake. They've declared that the EU is "falling behind" in innovation (really, patents) and are urging a more streamlined patent system that would be European-wide. The idea, of course, is that with a EU-wide patent system, it becomes easier to get patents. Of course, that only helps innovation if patents actually lead to more innovation and, sadly, the evidence suggests otherwise.

Filed Under: china, eu, patents, us

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Feb 2011 @ 3:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Where are you getting the rejection data from

    The rejection data is from the very PDF you directed me to.

    I understand that you are pointing at different numbers. I am working for the original post that Mike made on the subject, which included the graphic I pointed to. I am working with the data he provided. Are you suggesting that he misread the data or forgot to mention something about it?

    When you seperate out utility patents from design patents, it might even explain the increase in patents reviewed overall. Clearly, a utility patent is a little more straight forward, and much easier to handle. It would appear they put a lot of emphasis on this area, as the increase is all there (design patent approval actually drops). Since those can be handled faster than a design patent, the potential in the large increase is all about focus.

    I wasn't suggesting anything sinisiter in the numbers

    Actually, the "you" was that general you referencing to the actions of Mike in this instance. The supporting evidence I used to start with all came from the items in Mike's original post. Your added information (the stuff he decided we didn't need to know) makes his point of view look even less likely, and gives great credibility to the idea of a more efficient process, as promised by the new boss.

    The rubber stamp issue is a non-starter. If they want to just speed things up without consideration, they wouldn't even both to read the applications, and would just approve them. That more patents were refused than approved (by a long shot, applications were more than twice the approved rate, even if you offset the applications by 2 years). Clearly they aren't just passing anything.

    So Mike suggesting they are approving new patents "willy-nilly" is just plain wrong, not supported by what he links to, and destroyed by what you added to the discussion.

    Thanks :)

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