‘Illegal Sex Toy Patents’

Sarah R Wasserman Rajec and Andrew Gilden, ‘Patenting Pleasure’ (February 25, 2021), available at SSRN. In ‘Patenting Pleasure’, Professors Sarah Rajec and Andrew Gilden highlight a surprising incongruity: while many areas of US law are profoundly hostile to sexuality in general and the technology of sex in particular, the patent system is not. Instead, the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has over the decades issued thousands of patents on sex toys – from vibrators to AI, and everything in between. This incongruity is especially odd because patent law has long incorporated a doctrine that specifically tied patentability to the usefulness of the invention, and up until the end of the 20th century one strand of that doctrine held that inventions ‘injurious to society’ failed the utility test … (more)

[Nicholson Price, JOTWELL, 12 May]

(Visited 20 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply