Protection for Intellectual Property and Dignity
WARNING: this section (and the institution of ``intellectual
property'') is grossly obsolete. It is to be replaced with a bid
system described in the to-do list. Patents and copyrights no longer
exist in this implementation of an Innovist legal system. Trademarks
are certainly fixtures, however.
Within this section, "public" means available on an anonymous basis.
The state works to facilitate to creators legally binding guarantees
that they can reap financial rewards from their creations. To this
end, five registries are maintained: an invention registry, according
to which novel techniques are protected; a formulation registry,
according to which particular assemblages of techniques are protected;
a layout registry, according to which particular visual, tactile/
ergonomic, or auditory layouts are protected; a verbalization
registry, according to which particular encapsulable creative
instantiations are protected; and a trade and service mark registry,
according to which marketing names and symbols are protected.
All five registries operate on a first-come-first-served basis, but
all five also allow for demonstration of prior invention/use. Except
for trademarks, in the case that prior invention/use is proved, either
summarily or in court, the ownership of the intellectual property is
assigned to he who has proved prior invention/use, but the previously
registered owner can continue to use and sell the intellectual
property without fee or curtailment. Trademarks are strictly
Invention protection is not domain-specific. That is, rights to an
invention initially granted for use in one industry covers use of the
technique in any industry.
An invention is protected only from uses which negatively impact the
potential for use-based revenue of the inventor. Thus, discussion and
description of the invention, and use of the invention for a purpose
which does not generate financial revenue (research and
experimentation, hobbyist or recreational use, etc.) require neither
permission nor payment of a fee. Other use of the invention does
require permission (which the inventor can, of course, grant on a
blanket basis at his discretion).
If invention law is invoked to protect an invention, a creator agrees
to license the invention on demand without discretion. He cannot
withhold licensing for any reason. Furthermore, the state specifies a
maximum fee schedule specific to the particular invention, and the
inventor cannot demand a fee beyond the upper bounds specified
therein. Only unit fees can be levied; no initiation fee is
allowed. The state can base the maximum fee only on the expected
market potential of the invention, and is required to increase the fee
upper bound if the market demonstrates substantial willingness to pay
the current maximum licensing fee.
In order for an invention to be protected, it has to be substantially
different in its effects of technological, economic, and/or creative
empowerment from those of any invention already registered. Thus,
incremental variations on a technique which has at any time been
registered (whether or not the protection is still in force), cannot
themselves be registered, and are in fact covered by the original
The entire contents of the invention registry are to be published.
The registry is to be arranged as a logical subject hierarchy, so that
searches can be performed quickly.
A formulation is a particular arrangement of logical functioning
components. Formulations are protected in the same way as inventions,
except that they are domain-specific.
The protection of a layout can be guaranteed by law on a limited
basis. A layout is a particular combination of geometric arrangement,
typography, color choice, or other specific patterns of visual,
tactile/ergonomic, and/or auditory arrangement. In order for a layout
to enjoy protection, it must be sufficiently idiosyncratic that its
protection will not impede the development of the layouts of other
creations. more to the point, the latitude of the protection is narrow
such that only those aspects of the appearance which are sufficiently
idiosyncratic are protected. In applying for protection for a layout,
its creator must specify exactly those aspects of the layout for which
he is seeking protection.
Licensing of a layout is entirely at the discretion of the owner of
Domains are not relevant to verbalizations. Instead, a verbalization
is protected as a particular expression (playing on any combination of
the human perceptual senses, and interactive or not) of a linguistic,
narrative, or expositional/explanatory character. This expression may
be in any language, human or otherwise. The expression, any
substantial portion thereof, and any derivation directly therefrom, is
A work need not be published to enjoy verbalization protection.
It, and portions and derivations thereof, may be licensed entirely at
the discretion of the owner. Small excerpts (less than 1%, or less
than 1000 words, whichever is less) of the words or images contained
in protected material, and retelling of factual information derived
from protected material, do not require the permission of the owner(s)
or payment of any fees, but do require notification of the owner(s).
Trademarks and servicemarks protect brief linguistic, visual, or
auditory, identifiers used in marketing. They protect the owner only
from misrepresentation of another's product through use of the trade
or servicemark. No other protection is provided for marks. A mark is
protected from deliberate infringement by a substantially similar
mark. Marks can be either domain-specific or non-specific.
The terms associated with each of the registries are as follows:
inventions: 15 years, non-renewable
formulations: 25 years, non-renewable
layouts: 50 years, indefinitely renewable
verbalizations: 50 years, indefinitely renewable
trademarks: 10 years, indefinitely renewable
Each license for use of a work protected in any of the five registries
must identify the licensee, the work at issue uniquely by name,
creator(s), and description, and must enumerate the mode(s) of usage
The ownership of a work rests uniquely with its creator(s). No
contract can stipulate a transfer, waiver, or agreement to not assert
the rights of creation, herein enumerated.
The right of the creator to demand the perpetual dignity of his
creations (formulations, layouts, and verbalizations) cannot be
infringed, waived, assigned, or abandoned. By this right, the creator
can prevent the use, sale, and/or display of a version of his creation
constitutionally modified in any way. Should a court determine that
the creator's claim is viable, the offender is bound to rectify. If
the offender fails to do so within a period of 14 days, the creator
can use any means available to him to suitably alter or eliminate the
The creator of a work (a formulation, a layout, or a verbalization)
furthermore has a perpetual and inviolable right to have his name
appear with his works at his request.
The remainder of this section applies only to verbalizations, and does
not apply to inventions, formulations, layouts, or trademarks.
The owner of a work protected by verbalization rights can offer
licenses for use and replay of that work according to a contract of
his own specification. Such contract must constrain the licensee to
maintain the confidence of the work at issue to a degree sufficient to
deny to non-licenseholders access to the principal virtues of the
If the assent or intent of all the creator(s) is recorded that such be
done (i.e. a license identifying the public at large as the licensee),
a work that is published by display, broadcast, or dissemination in any
way which precludes identification and contractual binding of the
recipient, is no longer owned.
A work cannot be held that is neither accompanied by a proper
signature by the author[s] identifying the licensee, nor accompanied
by a signature by the author[s] identifying the public at large as the
licensee (an abandonment of ownership), nor associated with a
signature by the author[s] published elsewhere identifying the public
at large as the licensee.
No work is to be considered ever to be in the public domain. All works
are perpetually within the domain of their creators, except that this
domain is transferred by will or default only upon death of the
current arbiter of the domain. By default, the domain is assigned in
full to the surviving mentally competent spouse, eldest mentally
competent child, or closest surviving mentally competent relative, in
order of preference.
The improper introduction into a public arena of a work demands
restitution by the offender, when possible, and always results in the
issuance of an announcement (at the expense of the offender) in the
same arena that the introduction was improper. Specifically, a work
can be assured to have been legitimately introduced to a public arena
only when it includes a notice of abandonment of ownership properly
signed by the creator. Introduction of a work into a public arena for
purposes of encouraging or realizing financial gain must be
accompanied by a signed notice of abandonment. The lack of such a
signature does not alone comprise sufficient grounds to argue that a
ownership of a work introduced into a public arena is not abandoned,
or that the work is unlawfully held by a recipient.
Thus, ownership of a verbalization can be abandoned, but authorship
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This is a preliminary draft. Pending changes are in The To-Do List