Can I be sued for using my right hand to eat? Oh well, maybe the way i hold my knife? How about the way i comb my hair?
I support design patent, but these cannot be broad. They can protect against a direct copy, no more.
I think I will patent combining two or more elements which result in communication or conveyance of a useful commodity beyond the boundaries of the originator.
So, pipes and hoses, and connectors, and pins, and switches, and data busses, and ... and... will all require a license from me.
If you have lungs and arteries then Pay up!!!
Great points Rick. While many may feel that the USPTO should not allow design patents, or that trade dress should not be protected, the law is what it is and I agree that it's foolish to ignore it.
But I'm an IC designer, so there isn't much for me to think about in the realms of trade dress or look and feel! But for my customer's end product, that's a very different story.
On the contrary, something has to be done to end this foolishness. Because if we don't, any one of us can look forward for being sued for the most ridiculous reasons, even for reasons we never would have imagined.
Netgear makes a rectangular black box, and Linksys is now going to sue?
To me, this message is similar to the President encouraging immigrants to make use of the food stamp program. You're encouraging bad behavior, and you're exploiting the worst aspects of human behavior, i.e. basic greed, to do so.
I have to agree with the thrust of the article even though it sort of makes me crazy. The lesson learned from the Apple vs Samsung case is just: that if it looks at all different or better than you should file just to protect yourself. While the concept of patenting a rounded black rectangle is crazy, it pays off (at least this time). Again until/unless the law is changed there is a lot of incentive to when in doubt file (or just file anyway). Seems to be a great way to keep the patent office in business but I am not so sure about innovation being advanced by this approach.