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For Science! For innovation and invention!

I propose that the policy with regard to scientific endeavour is written explicitly that we will be as favourable as possible to the work of citizen scientists, non-profits, demonstrably non-partisan and non-corporately affiliated trusts, DIYBio labs, hackerspaces and community enterprises, whilst ensuring that the work of large pharmaceutical corporations is neither hindered in the innovation sense, nor allowed to proceed in a manner that only exists to reinvent wheels for the sake of corporate gain only, rather than for legitimate scientific reasons (Drug Patents Kill People). Furthermore, applicants are to be informed of all open licensing options by the patent office as a positive suggestion before they can submit that application, and the option to apply for a patent purely to have it streamlined into the public domain or as an Open Patent should be easily available at every stage.

Back to science, and I also propose that policy is put in place to ensure frameworks are developed transparently by which innovations in genetics and biotechnology (and other areas) that have a foreseeable impact on the direction of evolution itself, on the potential balance of military power and other world-changing stuff of that ilk, are automatically made available to all through open source, open licenses etc.
This has particular moral bearing where such developments affect the freedoms people have, eg. in choosing traits of babies, or indeed in editing their own genetics (it's a thing and it's coming in the next 20 or so years, mark my words).

Sorry if any of this repeats itself or lacks sense (it's late!), please feel free to discuss and correct.

Comments

  • If you want to put your invention into the public domain, why bother filing for a patent at all? You could just make a defensive publication instead. It would have the same effect, but without spending tens of thousands of pounds on legal and IPO fees or having to go through the excruciatingly mind-destroying tedium of translating your patent into patentese.
  • It all depends what the product is and how watertight you need its protection to be. I agree that non-patent protections are easier and should be encouraged and made more legally robust in cases where they are used for opening up an invention for use by all. However, sometimes a patent is a necessary protection when the invention is of a type that threatens to disrupt huge corporate interests in multiple industries. There are more than a few such technologies on their way in the coming 30 years or so that fall in that category.
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