National Innovation Association is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the education and enlightenment of novice and veteran inventors and innovators, and those who support the American Dream, regarding the importance and significance of Article I Section 8 Powers of Congress Clause 8 of our U.S. Constitution which states, “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” Specifically, our mission is to educate inventors and innovative startups in the best practices to succeed in the current environment.
As an inventor you must understand everything that you will have to face in the current environment, due to the drastic legislative changes that have occurred, especially since 2011 with the passage of the America Invents Act, coupled with several anti-inventor judicial decisions.
At National Innovation Alliance we provide the information you need to have for the best opportunity of achieving success. If you have what may become a truly valuable invention, there are additional steps you must take, pretty much required to take, in order to protect yourself and your patent.
George Washington, James Madison, and most all of our Founders knew that invention and innovation by “he, she, and they” would play a huge role in achieving economic independence for America. Little did they know what they put in place with our Intellectual Property “exclusive Rights” would also be a major part in what was to become known as the “American Dream.”
Famous Last Words
“Everything that can be invented has been invented.”
Charles Howard Duell,
the Commissioner of Patents (1899)
“It isn’t all over; everything has not been invented;
the human adventure is just beginning.”
Gene Roddenberry, Pilot & Star Trek Creator (1975)
A Bit of History
In the Thirteen Colonies, inventors could obtain patents through petition to a given colony’s legislature. In 1641, Samuel Winslow was granted the first patent in North America by the Massachusetts General Court for a new process for making salt.
During the period of the Confederation, after independence had been achieved but before the adoption of the Federal Constitution of the United States, most of the states had their own patent laws, although only South Carolina specifically set out a provision granting inventors an exclusive privilege of using their new machines for a defined period (14 years).
However, as noted by James Madison in the Federalist, “the States cannot separately make effectual provision” for the protection of invention and so in drafting the Constitution of the United States, responsibility for providing such protection was entrusted to the Congress of the United States.
Thus, our U.S. Constitution spells out quite clearly the rights of authors and inventors. In Article I, § 8 Powers of Congress, Clause 8, it states; “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”
The Patent Act of 1790 (1 Stat. 109) was enacted on April 10, 1790, about one year after our U.S. Constitution was ratified and granted the applicant (“He, she, or they”) “the sole and exclusive right and liberty of making, constructing, using and vending to others to be used, the said invention or discovery.” The law was concise, defining the subject matter of a U.S. patent as “any useful art, manufacture, engine, machine, or device, or any improvement there on not before known or used.”
While there have been numerous legislative changes and judicial decisions over the 220+ year history of Intellectual Property in America, it has been the last decade that has taken its toll on the independent inventor and innovative small businesses and startups.
Fortunately there are some in the U.S. Supreme Court who understand the words “exclusive Right” and have enough information about our Founders and their written works to know patents are property. As Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in June 2021, “For most of the Nation’s history, an issued patent was considered a vested property right that could be taken from an individual only through a lawful process before a court,” which, unfortunately, is not now the case.
Knowledge is power. The more you, as an inventor, know about what obstacles may be headed your way, the better equipped you will be to handle anything Big Tech or multi-national corporations may throw at you.