Patent laws and Copyright laws prevent others from stealing your ideas.

But were those ideas really yours to begin with? Or did you just happen to be in the right place at the right time, thinking the right thing?

It seems like when the time is ready for a truly revolutionary idea to come forth into public awareness, it just comes forth through whoever happens to be available at the time to notice it.

I can think of some notable historical examples including the invention of the telephone, the television and the radio where independent inventors had similar ideas at similar times - and often fought with each other afterwards over whose idea it originally was.

I'm sure there are many other similar examples.

If we accept that ideas may just be manifestations of the collective desires of many people and actually originate from the Universe / God / Oversoul / Collective Consciousness etc (whatever term you prefer), does it really make sense to allow certain individuals to own those ideas?

asked 12 Nov '09, 22:14

Stingray's gravatar image


edited 08 Aug '12, 11:36

Kathleen%20Kelly's gravatar image

Kathleen Kelly ♦♦

You are right, I'm almost certain that it indeed is inconsistent and a symptom of this dark age we live in.

The motives are greed ultimately based on fear and survival instinct and the failure to realize the abundance the universe offers.

With our subconscious we are all connected with each other, it is one subconscious, it is the universal consciousness.

We can see very clearly these days that in this information age new ideas become more and more abstract and immaterial, and that those nitpicking lawsuits over software patents really do hinder our technological, mental and spiritual growth and advancement.


answered 12 Nov '09, 23:33

herzmeister's gravatar image


The patent system was created for a very specific purpose: to allow inventors to monetize their inventions, in exchange for making the invention publicly available. Without such protection, anyone else could simply claim the idea as his own, and profit from it without compensating the original inventor.

The patent system works on a principle called "prior art." Under that system, it's not the existence of an idea that is protected, but rather the expression of that idea. Ideas themselves are not supposed to be patentable. Prior art says that, if the invention being considered for patent is trivially reproducible (ie. it is not a novel invention), or it already exists in the wild, then by definition it is not a patentable invention.

Unfortunately there are many problems with the patent system as it exists today. There are many companies who file patents on ideas for products, not because they wish to capitalize on those ideas themselves, but because they want to charge license fees to others who wish to invent things that might infringe on their patent. This is, in my opinion, an abuse of the patent system.

Also, the sheer number of patents filed on supposedly novel inventions (many of which will never see the light of day) stifles innovation because it is very difficult to determine whether or not an idea for an invention is not already covered by one or more patents. It is an especially difficult problem for the software industry, where patents are filed on concepts that many feel should not be patentable (the one-click interface used by Amazon, for example).

Under the prior art system, it doesn't matter whether or not an invention existed in the ether as an idea, waiting to be discovered. It only matters who thought of a practical way to express that idea first. Many ideas require years of hard work before they can be expressed in a way that is useful. No work is required to steal someone else's invention. Edison's light bulb is a good example.


answered 13 Nov '09, 23:22

Vesuvius's gravatar image


edited 19 Nov '09, 05:08

the universe does not pledge
to free enterprize
she does have her set laws

designed above human potential
that we actually fit into
yet when a pattern is seen

it becomes the property
of this viewer and is
safeguarded by the finder

for something we find or
have the gift to tune into
does it become only ours


answered 08 Aug '12, 21:44

fred's gravatar image


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