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Tesla opens up all its patents for fair use to help electric car infrastructure

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 13 Jun 2014 14:15 User comments (8)

Tesla opens up all its patents for fair use to help electric car infrastructure Yesterday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced a bold and strategic plan in which the company opened up all of their closely held patents for fair use, in an effort to boost the fledgling electric car market.
This means that anyone who wants to use the technology (in good faith) will not be sued and will likely actually receive assistance from the company.

Musk says that corporations that rely solely on their patents are falling behind: "It means they're not innovating. They're not innovating fast enough. You should be innovating so fast that you're invalidating your prior patents."

The brilliant executive then went on a rant about the current patent system and how it was stifling innovation in every industry. You will find very few people who are not CEOs who disagree with him.

Here is Musk's full post:

Yesterday, there was a wall of Tesla patents in the lobby of our Palo Alto headquarters. That is no longer the case. They have been removed, in the spirit of the open source movement, for the advancement of electric vehicle technology.

Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport. If we clear a path to the creation of compelling electric vehicles, but then lay intellectual property landmines behind us to inhibit others, we are acting in a manner contrary to that goal. Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.

When I started out with my first company, Zip2, I thought patents were a good thing and worked hard to obtain them. And maybe they were good long ago, but too often these days they serve merely to stifle progress, entrench the positions of giant corporations and enrich those in the legal profession, rather than the actual inventors. After Zip2, when I realized that receiving a patent really just meant that you bought a lottery ticket to a lawsuit, I avoided them whenever possible.

At Tesla, however, we felt compelled to create patents out of concern that the big car companies would copy our technology and then use their massive manufacturing, sales and marketing power to overwhelm Tesla. We couldn't have been more wrong. The unfortunate reality is the opposite: electric car programs (or programs for any vehicle that doesn't burn hydrocarbons) at the major manufacturers are small to non-existent, constituting an average of far less than 1% of their total vehicle sales.

At best, the large automakers are producing electric cars with limited range in limited volume. Some produce no zero emission cars at all.

Given that annual new vehicle production is approaching 100 million per year and the global fleet is approximately 2 billion cars, it is impossible for Tesla to build electric cars fast enough to address the carbon crisis. By the same token, it means the market is enormous. Our true competition is not the small trickle of non-Tesla electric cars being produced, but rather the enormous flood of gasoline cars pouring out of the world's factories every day.

We believe that Tesla, other companies making electric cars, and the world would all benefit from a common, rapidly-evolving technology platform.

Technology leadership is not defined by patents, which history has repeatedly shown to be small protection indeed against a determined competitor, but rather by the ability of a company to attract and motivate the world's most talented engineers. We believe that applying the open source philosophy to our patents will strengthen rather than diminish Tesla's position in this regard.

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8 user comments

113.6.2014 15:51

He maybe the most hated person by the Oil Corporations & the most acclaimed by the general public.


Live Free or Die.
The rule above all the rules is: Survive !
Capitalism: Funnel most of the $$$ to the already rich.

214.6.2014 11:11

The only thing holding back electric cars now are the batteries. Battery technology has been much slower to advance than just about all other technologies that the electric car is dependent on.


Ignorance en masse is still ignorance.

314.6.2014 16:04

Originally posted by Clam_Up:
The only thing holding back electric cars now are the batteries. Battery technology has been much slower to advance than just about all other technologies that the electric car is dependent on.
Depending on how they handle the Gigafactories even that won't be a problem in 5-7 years. Battery advancement from the Gigafactories (and Tesla/Panasonic R&D at said place) could result in a leap that renders the ICE obsolete for passenger vehicles just a few years after the factories open.

414.6.2014 16:37

Like Elon Musk say & know:
Even with all the money he have; he feel stuck. Since he don't know the right people who will improve this technology.

As an Open Source:
- The whole tech world have the opportunity to improve what his team haven't done in years.
- An advance of humanity as a whole.


Live Free or Die.
The rule above all the rules is: Survive !
Capitalism: Funnel most of the $$$ to the already rich.

514.6.2014 22:15

People with the know how will just make modifications to whatever the Tesla documents show and if there is an improvement, they'll march right into the patent office.

that puts us right back at exactly nothing.


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614.6.2014 22:41

Originally posted by DXR88:
People with the know how will just make modifications to whatever the Tesla documents show and if there is an improvement, they'll march right into the patent office.

that puts us right back at exactly nothing.
That would not comply with "fair-use" and would probably invite legal proceedings. They're not giving up their patents. Look... it's worth a go imo.



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This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Jun 2014 @ 22:43

Its a lot easier being righteous than right.


DSE VZ300-
Zilog Z80 CPU, 32KB RAM (16K+16K cartridge), video processor 6847, 2KB video RAM, 16 colours (text mode), 5.25" FDD

716.6.2014 16:55

Elon Musk’s radical patent strategy for Tesla is already paying off:
http://qz.com/222006/elon-musks-radical...ady-paying-off/


Live Free or Die.
The rule above all the rules is: Survive !
Capitalism: Funnel most of the $$$ to the already rich.

825.6.2014 19:55

You watch the oil Co. lobbyists will find some way to muck it all
up.

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