WHY IP? WHY THINK IP?

Why Intellectual Property? It’s a question I get a lot, from people who know that IP issues are on the top of my professional mind.

(Fortunately, that’s not all that’s on my mind, but the question of why The Infamous Stringdusters are not as lauded as Beyonce is a question for another day.)

Well, let’s start here: ” intellectual property accounts for 20% of U.S. GDP, and nearly 40% of economic growth. Furthermore, IP industries account for 74% of the county’s exports, amounting to $1 trillion.”  Think that one over. We don’t make things here, much, anymore. We develop ideas and neat, efficient implementations of ideas. Even where we would seem to be leaders in manufacturing, such as the automotive industry, not a car would be made without parts outsourced from Mexico, China, Japan , you name it. The Chevy Aero has 98% of its parts sourced outside the U.S. The Ford Expedition? 50/50.  That’s where we are going. So, that is “Why IP?”

I recently rebranded this blog and my Twitter feed to THINKINGIP for that very reason. The kinds of knowledge based solutions (and problems) that arise in everyday life, and most certainly in the life of an IP attorney such as me are mind-numbing. Yet, they must be attended to. There is a burgeoning industry of court actions by “trolls” (more benignly known as Non-Practicing Entities)  who seek damages for new implementations of existing exclusively-protected rights (whether patent or copyright). One might conclude that we are essentially eating our young, but that’s what happens when things are built elsewhere.

To review the kinds of things I’ve discussed, or Tweeted about over the last few weeks:

Chuck Shumer promotes fashion design copyright now that Sandy is not a problem. http://dld.bz/bSCbm 

North Face tries to stop trademark parodies. http://dld.bz/bSBZZ 

Audi doesn’t get http://Audicity.com . No bad faith. http://dld.bz/bSuFG 

IP protection for aboriginal cultures. http://dld.bz/bSuEV 

Some gruel, please, sir? Copyright Office wants to hear what you think about “the state of play of orphaned works” http://dld.bz/bSuE2 

Easter Egg in iOs6 privacy policy? http://dld.bz/bSuEv  

Copyright trumps state law claims. http://dld.bz/bSuEg  

When a customer list can be a trade secret. In Cali. http://dld.bz/bRXV4 

How to brand your baby, PTO-sssstyle. http://dld.bz/bRXUu  #THINKINGIP

Three words. Cloud. Security. Nightmares. http://dld.bz/bRKFQ 

Republicans Retreat On Copyright Reform? http://shar.es/G95RM  via@sharethis

Updated post on GOP’s pulling Copyright Report for lack of “balance”https://frawleylegal.wordpress.com/2012/11/18/copyright-reform-just-dont-tell-mickey/ …

Wow, who saw this coming? (everybody) digital borrowers of book also buy books, a lot. http://dld.bz/bRKFh 

Twinkies to fold. http://dld.bz/bRKMu  Lots of sweet IP http://dld.bz/bRKMC 

Cy pres award to advocacy groups disfavored in some class action settlements. http://dld.bz/bRKE2  Plaintiff’s counsel still eat well.

And on and on.  So, that’s WHY IP? Please follow me @#THINKINGIP on Twitter. There are no discernible prizes (yet), but you might get a chuckle.

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