Patents, Trademarks & Copyrights

Introduction The following is a brief summary of each tool for protecting intellectual property (IP). The tools discussed are Patents, Trademarks & Copyrights. Patents Patents protect an idea (invention) that is embodied in a device or method.  This is different from Copyright and Trademarks. The vast majority of patents are “utility patents”. There are also plant patents…

Read More →

Prior Use Defense: Trade Secrets v. Patenting II

Indroduction This blog is a clarification of my prior article entitled Trade Secrets v. Patenting.  In my prior article, I stated that a party using a technique or method in manufacturing as a trade secret would lose the right to continue practicing the trade secret if the secret technique or method became subject of a patent by…

Read More →

Secret Sale is Prior Art

Introduction The US patent code states that a person is entitled to a patent if the invention is novel, non-obvious and has utility. An invention product sale, including a sale made under a confidentiality agreement, can lose patent rights. See article Patent Elements. 35 U.S.C. Section 102(a) “Novelty; Prior Art.” states:              “A person shall be…

Read More →

Trade Secrets vs. Patenting

The Continuing Dilemma: Trade Secrets (Hidden Use) vs. Patent (Disclosed Monopoly) Disclaimer: Issue: Trade secrets compared to patents: I am biased against protecting know-how as a trade secret.  I participated in a 3 years chase of ex-employees turned competitors utilizing a trade secret manufacturing technique.  The burden of establishing the fact that the technique (consistently held behind…

Read More →