The Low-Down: Open Science versus Intellectual Property
" ... At its core, the issue pits the public good versus private gain. The patent system was supposed to mediate that dispute, but the size of the potential rewards has caused a loss in perspective. Driven by the hope and fear that their future prospects lay in locking up the rights to specific features of IP has frozen some areas of research and endangered individual patients in the medical field. In tech, it has simply wasted lots of shareholders' money - and possibly stifled the development of some innovative ideas. The reaction from the courts and the affected business communities has been increasingly, to challenge the notion of IP as an inalienable right. Context and impact are becoming a more significant part of the equation. There is also a growing awareness that the few may benefit from the involvement of the many even more than they do from the more restrictive current regime. The point is that repressing innovation in one venue simply encourages it in another. If scientists, inventors and entrepreneurs hope to benefit from this system in the future, they will have to redefine their notions of 'ownership' and 'return.' Or it will be done for them. JL Alex Mayyasi comments in PriceEconomics ... "