It Will Be Awesome if They Don’t Screw it Up: 3D Printing, Intellectual Property, and the Fight Over the Next Great Disruptive Technology

A new White Paper by Michael Weinberg of Public Knowledge entitled
It Will Be Awesome if They Don’t Screw it Up: 3D Printing, Intellectual
Property, and the Fight Over the Next Great Disruptive Technology
,
examines how intellectual property law impacts 3D printing, and how stakeholders who may feel
threatened by its growth might try to persuade law makers to modify IP law to legislate more control over it.

 

The Intellectual Property Implications of Low-Cost 3D Printing looked IP law and 3D printing through a UK legal lens, Michael’s paper has
a more US focus, taking a brief look at copyright, patents and
trademarks, 3d printing replacement, remix and repair.  Michael warns
that legal battles surrounding other digital formats such as music,
games and movies may soon happen around 3D printed products, and
concludes with a call to action:

There will be a time when
impacted legacy industries demand some sort of DMCA for 3D printing. If
the 3D printing community waits until that day to organize, it will be
too late. Instead, the community must work to educate policy makers and
the public about the benefits of widespread access. That way, when
legacy industries portray 3D printing as a hobby for pirates and
scofflaws, their claims will fall on ears too wise to destroy the new
new thing.

 

Do you think we need to start organizing ourselves to protect our rights to have access to enabling technologies like 3D printing?  Or will more open systems prevail and we can get down to the business of creating innovative designs?

Let us know your thoughts?

4 comments

  1. Jeff Coleman

    Absolutely–we need to act now to protect an innovative and vibrant future from dinosaurs who won’t want to adapt. This is why I am running as the first federal candidate for the Pirate Party of Canada–to provide leadership in learning to ride the technological tidal wave instead of trying to fight it. I’m posting with my party contact info but you all here at Shapeways know me as the owner of Terra Cotta Personal Fabricators. The worlds of 3D printing and intellectual property law are inextricably intertwined, and if we don’t stand up for the future we want to see the policies will instead be written by those who want to stop it. Strong words, but a fact our community needs to face if we hope to launch the Next Big Thing.

    Sincerely,
    Jeff

  2. Shapeways Blog

    There has been a bit of discussion in the past couple of weeks about 3D printing in the home, the world of possibilities it opens up and the IP implications that may also unfold. It is great to see more people being made aware of 3D printing and how it

  3. Shapeways Blog

    Michael Weinberg of Public Knowledge, the Author of It Will Be Awesome if They Don’t Screw it Up: 3D Printing, Intellectual Property, and the Fight Over the Next Great Disruptive Technology has another pressing cause that needs your immediate action!! U

  4. Shapeways Blog

    If you want to understand the new frontier of 3D printing Copyright, Patent and Trademark law, Public Knowledge’s new white paper: So, What is the Deal with Copyright and 3D Printing? is a perfect resource to understand exactly where the law stands

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