Planet Money Continues To Show How Damaging Software Patents Are To Innovation
from the repetition-is-good dept
Of course, actually showing the specific costs is difficult, but Maskin and Bessen have a few different ways to show it. For example, Maskin talks about the research that shows an increase in patenting has not increased investment in R&D -- and, if anything, it's shown that investment in R&D has potentially been limited due to patents. They note that there's an overwhelming amount of evidence at this point that we would likely be seeing greater innovation "if intellectual property were relaxed." As he notes there are numerous "natural experiments" that provide data to support this.
Separately, they discuss Bessen's research into how much the market has valued the "loss" due to bogus software patent lawsuits from patent trolls. That research shows that patent trolls have basically evaporated half a trillion dollars in value and wealth from companies that are actually innovating. And yet, all Congress can do is pass a useless patent reform bill that doesn't even come close to dealing with these issues.