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Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Intellectual property law run amok

Not only are they patenting different types of tax planning -- now they're claiming patent and copyright protection for yoga poses. It really has gotten ridiculous.

Comments (4)

I believe the "Bikram" yoga (so called hot yoga) method has been patented in the USA for some time now. The holder of said patents guards this property very ardently.
I am surprised the NYT didn't catch it.

In my business we have learned the hard way that many commonly used "terms of art" have recently been granted federal trademark registration. Anyone looking at the weekly Sunday advertising supplement would see existing use of these allegedly "unique" marks. Maybe the USPTO Examiner positions are being outsourced offshore?

From the story... So is the strapping Bikram Choudhury, founder of Bikram Yoga, who has copyrighted his method of teaching yoga — a sequence of 26 poses in an overheated room — and whose lawyers sent out threatening notices to small yoga studios that he claimed violated his copyright.

So, does this mean that a football coach who devises a clever play can copyright it - and prevent others from using it too? What if also devises the clever defense that stops his clever play? Can he use the courts to stop people from using his defense? Championships await!

the upholding of patents on business methods is the tree from which this evil has sprouted. i doubt congress will do anything intelligent to make the problem go away, though.

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