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May 23, 2008

Politically Correct

Each patent is an invention. Do you think the number of patents says something? Would knowing the top-patenting companies be a meaningful statistic? Of course not. Patents are nasty. If you strive to be a member in good standing of the Coalition of Patent Fairness (CPF), keep your business clean. Have a bloody steak, hold the veggies. Enjoy fat cigars, smooth bourbon, and classy hookers. "Patent, sir?" "No thank you Jeeves, I'm clinging to my guns and religion."

From the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO):

In 2007 the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office announced that it would no longer publish its own report on organizations receiving the most patents, because it wanted to discourage "any perception that we believe more is better." IPO has opted to continue publishing this IPO report, however, because the number of patents granted is one of the few objective measures of the patent system as a whole and the patenting activities of individual industries and companies. IPO and others are studying ways to develop more reliable measures of patent quality.

The IPO has published a ranking of companies by granted patents in 2007, imbecilicly labeled as "2007 Patent Owners Numerical Listing." The Patent Prospector is far too respectable a media organ (easy, ladies, don't get excited) to list the results, such as:

1. IBM 3,125
2. Samsung 2,723
3. Canon 2,047
4. Matsushita 1,972
5. Intel 1,864
6. Toshiba 1,734
7. Microsoft 1,662
8. Micron Technology 1,484
9. Hewlett-Packard 1,470
10. Sony 1,454

Of course, the numbers are mythical, as the American companies are proud members of CPF. Say it ain't so.

Only in a gesture of self-loathing do inventors and patent practitioners belong to IPO, "a trade association for owners of patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. IPO does not intend to encourage more patenting in U.S." Huh?! Just say no to IPO.

Hat tip of thanks to Kevin Noonan at Patent Docs.

Posted by Patent Hawk at May 23, 2008 8:03 PM | Patents In Business