Cresee, 1902, Practical Pointers for Patentees

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F.A. Cresee, M.E. Practical Pointers for Patentees: Containing valuable information and advice on the sale of patents: an elucidation of the best methods employed by the most successful inventors in handling their inventions. New York: Munn & Co., Scientific American Office, 361 Broadway, 1902.

Emphasizes the profits to be had from patents. States that while some of them do not pay off, most do, some handsomely.

That the majority of patents taken out prove lucrative is evident from the fact that upward of forty thousand applications for patents are filed each year in the United States Patent Office, and upward of five hundred are granted and issued each week. Probably about one-fifth of these patentees obtain their patents with a definite view of manufacturing their inventions, and the remainder obtain theirs with a view of realizing from the sale of the rights of manufacture. (15)

Speaking along this line in an official report the chief examiner of the Patent Office says: "A patent, if it is worth anything, when properly managed, is worth and can easily be sold for from $1,000 to $50,000. These remarks only apply to patents of ordinary or minor value. They do not include such as the telegraph, the planing machine, and the rubber patents, which are worth millions each." (16)

Suggested method of financing:

A better procedure to secure means necessary for the development, introduction, and sale of an invention is to borrow the money from a friend contingent on the sale of the patent, sell a State or country right, or enter into a contract with a party willing to furnish the means for a certain proportion of the proceeds derived from the invention. Generally speaking, it will not be hard to find a party willing to advance sufficient means to promote an invention which is protected by a patent for a certain percentage of the net receipts arising from its manufacture, sale, or territorial grants, and the patentee will probably find a person among his own acquaintances who will not only be glad to furnish the means necessary, but also be of value to the patentee in realizing from his invention. (22)

(There follows a sample contract for this type of agreement.)

Importance of publicity:

Many inventors overlook the importance of interesting newspaper men in their inventions. This is a matter of great consequence to the inventor in exploiting his invention, and should be given some attention. Newspapers desire items of interest of every description, and readers are usually interested in brief accounts of any new invention possessing novelty or merit; so that when the inventor once gets his invention into the newspapers it is generally copied by other papers, with the result that the invention gets a large amount of free advertising and publicity. These items frequently attract the attention of capitalists, manufacturers, and others, and at once put the invention in a favorable position before the public as could be done possibly in no other way—certainly in no cheaper way.
Many of the trade journals and other periodicals are also open to receive technical descriptions of inventions of merit concerning industrial improvements. Such articles should be written in good form, containing not over five hundred or a thousand words, and if admitted to this class of publications will be of the utmost value and importance in creating favorable public opinion, and in advancing the inventor's interests. (27–28)

Advertising at the inventor's own expense is also an option, should the free-publicity route fall through.

Chapter IV (30–40) gives ideas an guidelines for putting a dollar value on a given patent.

Chapter V & VI (41–72) describe how to sell patents.

  • Warning about 'patent-selling agencies'. Shady practices such as: "Many will also agree to sell both the United States and Canadian patents, if the patentee will file the Canadian application through them; it is evident, however, that this is only a scheme to get the patentee to take out the Canadian patent through them—they having no facilities for disposing of either of the patents" (42).
  • Techniques for creating interest: advertising, personal contacts...
  • Different arrangements: selling different classes of rights separately, selling territorial rights, selling licenses only instead of full rights, royalties; ways of forming your own company

Chapter VII: Canadian patents (73–78)

Chapter VIII: Overview of case law governing patents, etc. (79–91)

Chapter IX: Transfer of rights (i.e. assignment, granting, licensing) (92–105). An assignee has some or all of an interest in the patent as a whole. A grantee has exclusive rights to the patent within a specified sectional area. A licensee has somehow partial rights. Different sample contracts are provided.

Chapter X: Tables and statistics (107–139): US population by county, city, and occupation.

Original title Practical Pointers for Patentees: Containing valuable information and advice on the sale of patents: an elucidation of the best methods employed by the most successful inventors in handling their inventions
Simple title Practical Pointers for Patentees
Authors Franklin Allison Cresee
Date 1902
Countries US
Languages en
Keywords patents, innovation, finance, United States Patent Office
Related to aircraft? 0
Page count 144
Word count
Wikidata id