Patents: The Guardians of Innovation

Go Lean Commentary

As evident in the following quotation regarding patent offices, the book Go Lean…Caribbean focuses heavily on the promotion and protection of Intellectual Property:

“A patent office is a governmental or intergovernmental organization which controls the issue of patents & trademarks. Patent offices may grant a patent or reject the patent based on whether or not the application fulfils the requirements for patent-ability. The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is 1 of the 17 specialized agencies of the United Nations. WIPO was created in 1967 “to encourage creative activity, to promote the protection of Intellectual Property throughout the world.” [But international coordination did not only begin in 1967 as] the predecessor to WIPO was the United International Bureau for the Protection of Intellectual Property established in 1893 to administer the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary & Artistic Works (1886). WIPO currently has 185 member states and administers 24 treaties..” – Go Lean…Caribbean (Page 29)

The book posits that this strategy of facilitating patent offices to promote Intellectual Property can help grow economies. Yet, the book relates that this strategy is not new. Looking back on history, the book asserts (Page 29) that this strategy was adopted as a pivotal right for citizens in the early days of the United States of America. Even still, patents pre-dated the birth of the US, as they were awarded as Royal charters and decrees before hand. While the American Revolution was a rejection of the monarchy, the principles of patents continued. So the legal basis for the US Patent system, was embedded in the US Constitution at the start – Article 1 Section 8 – back in 1789. That clause states that …

the Congress shall have Power … to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.

On 31 July 1790, the first patent was issued to inventor Samuel Hopkins and signed by then-President George Washington.

CU Blog - Patents - The Guardians of Innovation - Photo 1

CU Blog - Patents - The Guardians of Innovation - Photo 1b

What a fine start!

But where did the road turn?

There are now organizations that go out and buy patents, then look for anyone that may consume the concepts similar to those patents. These Patent Trolling parties are not focused on future innovations, rather just litigation. The following is a VIDEO, using comedy and buffoonery, to highlight the abuse of this practice:

VIDEO – Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Patents (HBO)

Published on Apr 19, 2015For inventors, patents are an essential protection against theft. But when Patent Trolls abuse the system by stockpiling patents and threatening lawsuits, businesses are forced to shell out tons of money.
Content warning: Some profanity!

This issue is part-and-parcel of the recognition that American leadership may not always pursue the Greater Good. There are times, as reflected in this VIDEO, where Crony Capitalism may hi-jack good policies. This is an example of Big Legal where lawyers are quick to litigate a civil case just for a quick gain, as opposed to a pursuit of justice. See related news articles here:

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Number of Patent Violation Lawsuits

There seems to be conflicting community ethos: the production of lawyers versus the production of engineers; (see Appendices below). In this case, it is the conclusion of this commentary that Patent Trolls stifle technical innovation through predatory litigation.

This issue of Patent Trolling aligns with the Go Lean book, in its mission to provide proper stewardship for the patent process in the Caribbean. The book posits that efficient management – technocratic – of this vital area is essential for the elevation of regional society by optimizing the economic, security and governing engines here in the Caribbean.

The book Go Lean…Caribbean champions the cause of building and optimizing the Caribbean eco-system. There is a lot of expectations for Intellectual Property (technology, music, film, art and literature)  in the region, to aid and assist with all aspects of the Go Lean prime directives; defined as follows:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy to $800 Billion & create 2.2 million new jobs.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines.

The book serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the technocratic Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU), a federal government to administer and optimize the economic/security/governing engines in the homeland of the region’s 30 member-states. The book Go Lean…Caribbean clearly recognizes that promoting and protecting Intellectual Property will contribute to industrial and cultural development of any society. The Caribbean does not only want to be on the consumption end of Intellectual Property; we want to create, develop and contribute to innovation. This starts by fostering genius in Caribbean stakeholders who demonstrate competence in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). Since Intellectual Property apply to more than STEM endeavors, we need the proper oversight – not too lax, as in the current Caribbean, and not trolling, as in the foregoing VIDEO. We need the proper oversight for music, film, art and literary copyrights as well.

At the outset, the Go Lean roadmap recognizes the value of harnessing careers related to Intellectual Property (IP). This intent was pronounced early in the book with these statements in the Declaration of Interdependence (Page 12 & 14):

xiii.  Whereas the preparation of our labor force can foster opportunities and dictate economic progress for current and future generations, the Federation must … recognize and facilitate excellence in many different fields of endeavor, including sciences, languages, arts, music and sports. This responsibility should be executed without incurring the risks of further human flight, as has been the past history.

xxvi.  Whereas the Caribbean region must have new jobs to empower the engines of the economy and create the income sources for prosperity, and encourage the next generation to forge their dreams right at home, the Federation must therefore foster the development of new industries, like that of ship-building, automobile manufacturing, prefabricated housing, frozen foods, pipelines, call centers, and the prison industrial complex. In addition, the Federation must invigorate the enterprises related to existing industries like tourism, fisheries and lotteries – impacting the region with more jobs.

xxvii.  Whereas the region has endured a spectator status during the Industrial Revolution, we cannot stand on the sidelines of this new economy, the Information Revolution. Rather, the Federation must embrace all the tenets of Internet Communications Technology (ICT) to serve as an equalizing element in competition with the rest of the world. The Federation must bridge the digital divide and promote the community ethos that research/development is valuable and must be promoted and incentivized for adoption.

xxviii.  Whereas Intellectual Property can easily traverse national borders, the rights and privileges of Intellectual Property must be respected at home and abroad. The Federation must install protections to ensure that no abuse of these rights go with impunity, and to ensure that foreign authorities enforce the rights of the Intellectual Property registered in our region.

xxx.  Whereas the effects of globalization can be felt in every aspect of Caribbean life, from the acquisition of food and clothing, to the ubiquity of ICT, the region cannot only consume, it is imperative that our lands also produce and add to the international community, even if doing so requires some sacrifice and subsidy.

xxxii.  Whereas the cultural arts and music of the region are germane to the quality of Caribbean life, and the international appreciation of Caribbean life, the Federation must implement the support systems to teach, encourage, incentivize, monetize and promote the related industries for arts and music in domestic and foreign markets. These endeavors will make the Caribbean a better place to live, work and play.

The Go Lean book presents the promotion and protection of Intellectual Property as a community ethos, a fundamental character/spirit that the Caribbean must adopt. This spirit must reflect an underlying sentiment that would inform the beliefs, customs, or practices of the Caribbean people. Community ethos would therefore cover strategies, tactics and implementations. This roadmap was constructed with this and other community ethos in mind, plus the execution of related strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to impact our society. The following is a sample of these specific details from the book:

Community Ethos – Deferred Gratification Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – People Respond to Incentives in Predictable Ways Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – The Consequences of Choices Lie in the Future Page 21
Community Ethos – Economic Principles – Job Multiplier Page 22
Community Ethos – Security Principles – Anti-Bullying and Mitigation Page 23
Community Ethos – Governing Principles – Lean Operations Page 24
Community Ethos – Governing Principles – Return on Investments Page 24
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Future Page 26
Community Ethos – Ways to Foster Genius Page 27
Community Ethos – Ways to Promote Intellectual Property Page 29
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact Research & Development Page 30
Community Ethos – Ways to Bridge the Digital Divide Page 31
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Greater Good Page 37
Strategy – Vision – Confederate 30 Member-States Page 45
Strategy – Mission – Exploit the benefits and opportunities of Intellectual Property Page 46
Tactical – Fostering a Technocracy Page 64
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Patent, Standards, and Copyrights Office – One for entire Region Page 78
Tactical – Separation of Powers – Communications and Media Regulatory Authority Page 80
Implementation – Steps to Implement Self-Governing Entities Page 105
Implementation – Ways to Deliver Page 109
Implementation – Ways to Impact Social Media – Caribbean Cloud Page 111
Implementation – Ways to Benefit from Globalization Page 119
Planning – 10 Big Ideas for the Caribbean Region – Cyber-Caribbean Page 127
Planning – Ways to Make the Caribbean Better Page 136
Advocacy – Ways to Grow the Economy Page 151
Advocacy – Ways to Create Jobs Page 152
Advocacy – Ways to Foster Technology Page 197
Advocacy – Ways to Foster e-Commerce Page 198
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Main Street Page 201
Advocacy – Ways to Improve the Arts Page 229
Advocacy – Ways to Promote Music Page 231
Appendix – Copyright Infringement – Protecting Intellectual Property Businesses Page 351

This Go Lean roadmap calls for the heavy-lifting to build-up Caribbean communities, to shepherd important aspects of Caribbean life, so as to better prepare for the future, dissuade skilled-labor emigration and encourage repatriation. Promotion of industries related to Intellectual Property (IP) is vital for this quest.

These goals were previously featured in blog/commentaries, as sampled here: The City of Ann Arbor, Michigan: Model for Communiies Promoting IP Start-ups Small town IP Innovator: Daktronics – Makes the largest video displays IP Innovator Google and Mobile Phones – Here comes Change ‘Change the way you see the world; you change the world you see’ ‘We Built This City on Music, Entertainment and Leisure Businesses’ How One IP Entrepreneur Can Rally a Whole Community Plea to Detroit: Less Tech, Please Robotic Innovation helps Amazon tackle Cyber Monday Funding Caribbean IP Entrepreneurs – The ‘Crowdfunding’ Way Where the Jobs Are – Computers & IP Reshaping Global Job Market STEM Jobs Are Filling Slowly IP Innovator Amazon’s new FIRE Smartphone The need for highway safety innovations – here comes Google Innovative Autonomous cargo vessels without crews CARCIP Urges Greater IP Innovation

The Go Lean book focuses primarily on economic issues; it recognizes that engineered products, computer hardware, software and appliances (innovative hybrid products combining hardware and software) are the future direction for job growth. As conveyed in the foregoing VIDEO, these initiatives will require IP protections. This is where new jobs will be found. The foregoing VIDEO also conveys how IP rights can be easily abused, with too little enforcement or too much application; (too wide an interpretation).

The Go Lean roadmap describes the heavy-lifting for people, organizations and governments to forge innovations here at home in the Caribbean, and to protect the scientists, artists and the public.

We can do this; we must make the Caribbean region a better place to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the free e-book of Go Lean … Caribbean – now!


Appendix – Newspaper Letter-to-Editor: Commentary on adding more Law Schools in Florida – August 11, 1999

Title: Lawyers Vs. Engineers

I get a real hoot out of our Florida schools of higher learning wanting to add law schools. Especially when you consider we have a lawyer for every 450 people in our country as opposed to Japan’s one lawyer per 30,000 people. Furthermore, Japan has half of our population but graduates twice as many engineers.

Japan may be leaving us in the dust as far as technology is concerned but if we ever get them in court, well make monkeys out of them.

Sometimes I wonder.

Chic Volturno, Hollywood, Florida



AppendixJOKE: Three lawyers and three engineers are traveling on a train…

Three lawyers and three engineers are traveling by train to a conference.

At the station, the three lawyers each buy tickets and watch as the three engineers buy only a single ticket.

“How are three people going to travel on only one ticket?” asks a lawyer.

“Watch and you’ll see,” answers an engineer.

They all board the train. The lawyers take their respective seats but all three engineers cram into a restroom and close the door behind them. Shortly after the train has departed, the conductor comes around collectingtickets. He knocks on the restroom door and says, “Ticket, please.” The door opens just a crack and a single arm emerges with a ticket in hand.  The conductor takes it and moves on.

The lawyers see this and agree that it is quite a clever idea so, after the conference, they decide to copy the engineers on the return trip and save  some money (recognizing the engineers’ superior intellect).

When they get to the station, they buy a single ticket for the return trip.  To their astonishment, the engineers don’t buy a ticket at all.

“How are you going to travel without a ticket?” says one perplexed lawyer.

“Watch and you’ll see,” answers an engineer.

When they board the train the three lawyers cram into a restroom and the three engineers cram into another one nearby.

The train departs.

Shortly afterward, one of the engineers leaves his restroom and walks over to the restroom where the lawyers are hiding. He knocks on the door and  says, “Ticket, please.”


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