GENTECH archive


Re: Patented "Substantially Equivalent" Frankenfood

Peter Ligotti wrote
> David says here that time,
> money and effort can be patented. He implies that it doesn't
> matter if the product is unique -- just so that time, money,
> and effort have gone into the product. Sorry to say, but that
> is incorrect, in fact that's utter and complete Franken-thinking.
> Patents are for inventive creativity, to reward and protect the
> original creator of useful products, not to reward hard work,
> time spent, sweat of the brow, sums of money, or even to protect
> irresponsible corporations that stealfully
> experiment on the global population with Frankenfoods.

Obviously I cannot speak for David here but what I take from what he 
is saying, and indeed what I would say myself is that the patent 
rewards creativity AND the hard work etc.. which goes into 
substantiating the original ideas and claims made in the patent. It 
is not enough to simply have a good idea. Neither is it enough to 
work hard. A combination of creativity, time and effort deserve 
protection so that the inventor may reap the rewards that may come 
from his invention.

On the issue of "Frankenfoods", personally I think such terminology 
is inapropriate. If you disagree with the methods which have been 
undertaken, ie the lack of testing of the GM foods, then this is 
entirely appropriate and probably justified. I am not going to argue 
with this point. However, to negatively label the product is 
inappropriate. To describe ALL genetically modified foods as "monsters" 
which will destroy us all is jumping to conclusions, just as the 
corporations producing them have albeit at the opposite end of the 
"validity spectrum". Lets not blindly decide that GM food is WRONG, 
wrong and always wrong. Should we not advocate more laboratory 
testing? More stringent testing? More validation and verification of 
the product rather than outright dismissal?