Monday, November 18, 2002

Somebody asks whether the text of patents is copyrighted, or in the public domain. I say the patent documents are in the public domain, based on court holdings that all binding laws are in the public domain:
[The 1888 US Supreme Court case] Banks represents a continuous understanding that "the law," whether articulated in judicial opinions or legislative acts or ordinances, is in the public domain and thus not amenable to copyright. Recent 5th Circuit opinion

Also, the US Patent Office says:
Patents are published into the public domain as part of the terms of granting the patent to the inventor. As such, they are not subject to copyright restrictions. ...

No comments: