on the raising of capital front, indeed the recent years have shown a remarkable trend toward the little guy being able to do this effectively and nimbly. A very good development.
Implicit assumption #2: The selling of the patent actually transfers something useful towards the actual innovation
The innovation itself is entirely separate from the patent. One is real, the other is an entirely made up legal construct - so no the patent isn't going to do anything to the actual innovation. Except encourage people to innovate because there is some possible 'reasonable' return on their effort; which is the point no?
And yet, you almost never see cases of someone selling a patent to encourage development of some new technology
Never said that. Being small enough that you can't adequately bring it to market is an entirely valid reason for selling the patent. Some people are 'idea people' who are better suited to coming up with new innovative ideas but aren't good at bringing it to market. They should be given protection shouldn't they?
If they want to try and fail to bring something to market...that's up to them, but selling their patents to someone who can would seem to be a way to encourage yet more innovation.
It's a reasonable argument whether this is truly *needed* anymore, but it does encourage innovation. As to whether the existence of patent trolls negates that encouragement...perhaps, but simply throwing out the patent system entirely wouldn't be a great thing either.
The 'knowledge transfer' also likely doesn't happen if someone figures something out in the garage but doesn't take it further because they won't see any return from the effort.
The internet and modern connectivity are certainly helping people transfer vast amounts of knowledge without the patent system, but I would disagree that it isn't still a useful tool to be used.
the statement is perfectly valid and so is your point.
The issue with 3D printers isn't that they can print things covered under copyrights or patents.
I can paint, draw or make anything I damned well want too and use it myself without there being an 'infringement' of those copyrights or patents.
They expressly provide the monopoly over the consumer market...what I do on my own free time isn't the consumer market.
Possibly patents might be violated if I can make and use something in my business otherwise under patent...but then it would be more of an argument that the patent should be invalidated if someone not skilled in the art can also make the same thing.
Still though if you're not actively selling such things, it's hard to see how it rises to the level of someone wanting to prosecute you.
In reality, nobody would likely ever know you printed a full size Princess Leia stature to, ahem, 'dance' with ;-)
The comparison is as baseless as when TD has used it in the past. The infringing/not infringing status is not at all related to the content so it is fundamentally impossible to correctly determine what is valid and what isn't simply by looking at the content.
The check of 'sexual' in nature though is a check on the actual content itself and thus is a more doable proposition. And doubly so since this isn't a legal issue, just their choice. They can make mistakes without the threat of massive RIAA/MPAA lawsuits.