Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Monsanto Seed Patent Case Gets U.S. Supreme Court Review - Businessweek

http://mobile.businessweek.com/news/2012-10-05/monsanto-seed-patent-case-gets-u-dot-s-dot-supreme-court-review


The merits of the US IPR system are debatable, but that doesn't make Monsanto any different than Apple. Saved seed is genetically copied and freely distributed intellectual property. If its not OK to copy and distribute freely the iPad OS, then it's not OK to do it with Roundup Ready soybeans. You either accept IPR or not, which again is a debatable concept. But if you reject that IPR is really 'property' as some economists do, then your beef is with the US government, not specifically Monsanto. It just puts Monsanto and Apple in the same boat. Apple has the advantage that it's much harder to copy and distribute their OS than it is to copy the OS of a self pollinated plant, so enforcement costs illicit different tactics from different companies. i.e. Monsanto gets more attention from the far left as they hold hands with far right wing conspiracy theorist counterparts that have somehow convinced themselves that it is OK to restrict 'economic' freedom to promote 'food' freedom (i.e. prop 37, gmo bans, etc)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

" If its not OK to copy and distribute freely the iPad OS, then it's not OK to do it with Roundup Ready soybeans. You either accept IPR or not, which again is a debatable concept."

Did Apple incorporate other people's property into their OS? Seems to me that Monsanto incorporated a lot of prior art into their patent. There is no reason, a priori, why natural genomes should be treated as public domain, any more than minerals in the ground. Certainly public property, but maybe they should be licensed under restrictive terms such as GPL or other open source license. Certainly the public ought to maximize its own interests, not those of the private monopolists, in managing our collective genetic heritage. I see no such imperative in the case of iOS, which to my knowledge is entirely Apple's creative product.