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Patently Contestable Electrical Technologies and Inventor Identities on Trial in Britain

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ISBN-10: 0262019035

ISBN-13: 9780262019033

Edition: 2013

Authors: Stathis Arapostathis, Graeme Gooday

List price: $42.00
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Late nineteenth-century Britain saw an extraordinary surge in patent disputes overthe new technologies of electrical power, lighting, telephony, and radio. These battles played outin the twin tribunals of the courtroom and the press. In Patently Contestable,Stathis Arapostathis and Graeme Gooday examine how Britain's patent laws and associated cultureschanged from the 1870s to the 1920s. They consider how patent rights came to be so widely disputedand how the identification of apparently solo heroic inventors was the contingent outcome of patentlitigation. Furthermore, they point out potential parallels between the British experience ofallegedly patentee-friendly legislation introduced in 1883 and a similar potentially empoweringshift in American patent policy in 2011. After explaining the trajectory of an invention fromlaboratory to Patent Office to the court and the key role of patent agents, Arapostathis and Goodayoffer four case studies of patent-centered disputes in Britain. These include the mostlyunsuccessful claims against the UK alliance of Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison in telephony;publicly disputed patents for technologies for the generation and distribution of electric power;challenges to Marconi's patenting of wireless telegraphy as an appropriation of public knowledge;and the emergence of patent pools to control the market in incandescent light bulbs.
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Book details

List price: $42.00
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 4/12/2013
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 320
Size: 6.50" wide x 9.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.210
Language: English

Graeme Gooday is Professor of the History of Science and Technology in the School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science at the University of Leeds.

Introduction: Analyzing Disputed Electrical Invention
The Territorial Dynamics of Managing Inventors' Rights
Configuring and Defending Patenting Strategies: Experts, Judges, and Witnesses in Action
Patents and Identity in Early UK Telephony Disputes
Contested Dynamos and Wires: Tribunals of Technologies, Ownership, and Identities
Gift to the World? The Contested Status and Rewards of Early Wireless Telegraphy
Patents, Identities, and Ownership in the British Electric Lamp Industry, 1878-1920
Conclusion: Cultures of Invention and Knowledge Management in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries