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   Author  Topic: Public Domain...  (Read 784 times)
JohnD
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Public Domain...
« on: Oct 17th, 2007, 8:06pm »
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I had what I thought was an original idea...After hours of patent research I found out otherwise.  A patent was issued back in the 1950's for a product which to my surprise is not on the market.  My own prototype developed before knowing of its prior existance had a few changes which made the product a bit easier to use. Yet both ideas are so similar. Question...Would it be advisable to seek a patent on the minor (in my opinion) changes? And if not could I seek a trademark attach it to the product and develop this idea using its public domain status?  
Help is appreciated.
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CriterionD
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Re: Public Domain...
« Reply #1 on: Dec 19th, 2007, 3:52pm »
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To patent your product, your changes to it must be considered both novel and "non obvious" (and of course, your patent protection would only be pursuant to your changes).  If you are unclear as to whether you feel your changes are patentable, you may want to get in touch with a patent attorney (or agent).  They couldn't tell you for sure but should be able to provide an educated opinion based on their knowledge and experience.  There are various attorneys and such that post on this forum and may be willing to help you, I could probably refer you somewhere and/or simply help point you in the right direction if you were to get in touch with me.
 
You are certainly free to market the product as described in the patent which you located.  As far as your changes, depending on the depth of patent research already conducted, you want to make sure that they have not been patented (or are in the process of being patented by someone else).  At the very, very least - if you haven't already - you should search for more recent patents which reference the 50's patent that you located.  This can be done easily on just about any patent search site.
 
Trademark law is separate in and of itself from patent law.  It can be used to you advantage when marketing any product - regardless of whether or not that product is patented.
 
Well, I now realize I just replied to a post from October, hopefully it doesn't go to waste.
« Last Edit: Dec 19th, 2007, 4:25pm by CriterionD » IP Logged

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