2nd paper Tech Class – Benedict Delos Reyes

2nd Paper for Technology and the Law – Atty. Berne Guerrero                                      Benedict delos Reyes

 

  1. Introduction

 

                The fast growing modernization in all aspects of life due to greater demands of daily living and way of doing business resulting to complexities and in the process becomes necessities by reason of familiarity, fondness and comfort to which every human being experience.

The proponent of this mini paper aims to prove that other things strictly being implemented by our laws are sometimes too much of being good which oftentimes foresee the real picture in our way of living. These things usually cause trouble that in reality can be resolve through simple, less expensive and peaceful means. More so if it can be arrange through a “simple smile then let go”.

The study we are in discusses the rights of a certain company on the informal or casual usage of their brands though having a picture then advertising them, without any permission or using them as a tool in order to market other commodities by abusing their good image and name.

On the other hand, we are also given a lee way on whether  we chose to be on the people’s side on the usage of such brands vis a vis on what is explained on the later paragraph. The proponent of this study does not wish to be bias and even ought to be the an impartial being but strongly believes in the saying“ that it is a lot better to set free a guilty person than to incriminate the innocent”.    

 

  1. History of Patents

 

The origins of patents for invention are obscure and no one country can claim to have been the first in the field with a patent system. However, Britain does have the longest continuous patent tradition in the world. Its origins came from the 15th century, when the Crown started making specific grants of privilege to manufacturers and traders.

The word patent comes from the Latin ‘litterae patentes’, meaning an open letter. Such letters were used by medieval monarchs to confer rights and privileges. With a royal seal, the letters served as proof of those rights, for all to see. While the first system for patenting inventions cannot be attributed to any one country, it is generally acknowledged that the first informal system was developed in Renaissance Italy. This system was introduced into the rest of Europe by émigré Venetian glass-blowers to protect their skills against those of local workers.

The first recorded patent of invention was granted to John of Utynam. In 1449, he was awarded a 20-year monopoly for a glass-making process previously unknown in England (subsequently, he supplied glass for the windows of Eton College Chapel, UK). In return for his monopoly, John of Utynam was required to teach his process to native Englishmen. That same function of passing on information is now fulfilled by the publication of a patent specification.

 

In North America the colonies adopted a similar system of limited monopolies. Following the revolution in 1788 Article I, section 8 of the Constitution was ratified:

‘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 writing and discoveries’.

More recently, during the 1980s, we have seen the development of supra-national patent-issuing authorities – the European Patent Office and World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO). These bodies enable patent applications to be filed simultaneously in a number of countries. In 1995, US patent law was changed following the GATT agreement to harmonize USPTO practice with the patent system in other countries.

 

Sources: www.ipo.gov.uk

Ip-science.thompsonreuters.com

 

 

 

 

Some of Delphion’s Gallery of Historic Patents


 

   

US03414292
Inflatable safety device (car airbag)

Sidney Oldberg & William R Carey (1968)


 

US00174465
Improvement in Telegraphy (Telephone)

Alexander Graham Bell (1876)

   

 

   

US00157124
Barbed wire

Joseph F Glidden (1874)


US00821393
Flying-machine

Orville Wright & Wilbur Wright (1906)

   

   

USD0011023
Statue of Liberty design

Auguste Barholdi (1879)


 

US00621195
Navigable balloon

Ferdinand Graf Zepplin (1899)

   

 

   

US02292387
Secret communication system (frequency hopping)

Hedy Markey (Lamarr) & George Antheil (1942)


 

USD0205998
Batmobile design

George Barris (1966)

   

 

   

US00006469
Buoying vessels over shoals

Abraham Lincoln (1849)


US02717437
Velvet type fabric and method of producing same (Velcro)

George de Mestral (1955)

   

 

Source: www.delphion.com

 

 

  1. The Proponents Side

 

 

Every brand is entitled to be registered as a matter of right in order to protect its own name including the owners thereof against other usurpers and impostors claims. This method prevents stealing other people’s achievements and ideas in order to enrich them though use of unjustly enriched individuals which is the very reason why the law on patents was made by our great ancestors.

 

However, under also the very said law there is reasonableness on its implementation that it gives justice to individuals which uses such brands in good faith due to familiarity and customary usage, that it already became a tradition or custom that a certain brand is been widely used casually on anything and can be even associated with its kind such as a name recall. Examples of these are Colgate for toothpaste, Maggi or Lucky Me for noodles etc.

 

The Doctrine of Secondary Meaning gives a lee way on such actions which states that “ a word or phrase originally incapable of exclusive appropriation usually generic with reference with an article in the market, because of geographically or otherwise descriptive, might nevertheless have been used so long and so exclusively by one producer with reference to his article, that in that trade and to the branch of the purchasing public, the word or phrase has become to mean that the article was his product. (LYCEUM OF THE PHILS. INC. VS CA 219 SCRA 610 and G. and C. Merriam Co. v. Saalfield, 198 F. 369, 373, cited in Ang v. Teodoro, G.R. No. L-48226, Dec. 14, 1942).

 

From the above it can be dwelt that base on our case being discussed on the matter, the brand has no claim to the innocent individual which used the said brand and included it to his picture being used on an advertisement provided of course such brand has already acquired a secondary meaning and was used in good faith and not to destroy the reputations of the said product, otherwise it will be on the negative.

 

Others may be questioning the leeway granted by the earlier discussed doctrine being implemented on brands and patents, but we should not forget that every law being past should be enforced even with harshness, but the law is the law! However, every law passed by the legislature has always an “Honor and Dignity” behind it.

 

 

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