Business Method Patents Challenge the Purpose and Intent of the Patent System
15 Pages Posted: 29 Oct 2009
Date Written: October 27, 2006
In ways that could not have been predicted even a few years ago, the patent system is in crisis. A series of unplanned mutations have transformed patents into a positive threat to the digital and internet economy. The patent office has grown entangled in philosophical confusion of its own making; it has become a ferocious generator of litigation; and many technologists believe that is has begun to choke the very innovation it was meant to reward. This article examines the sources and purposes of patent law, the history of software patents, and how such patents in fact challenge the purpose and intent of the patent system. Due to a number of phenomena discussed in the article, thesystem has actually impeded innovation. The conclusions include recommendations for modifying the patent system to better accommodate thecompeting interests of inventor reward and public benefit.
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