A Patent on Christmas

What would that look like, if Christmas were labeled intellectual property like everything else on the planet these days?  Let’s think this through.

In order to put up a Christmas tree in your home or business, you’d have to pay a licensing fee to the first person who ever put up a Christmas tree (it was his or her idea, after all).  And of course there would be the fee to the owner of the shape of the tree, because surely that would be patented as well.  (Apple?  Poking fun right at you with your rounded corner madness.) Then, you’d have to pay someone to research patents related to decorating your tree, because what if you and someone else came up with the idea of decorating it the same way?  If there were no patents on the way a tree should be decorated, then by God someone somewhere would be losing money because all ideas must be paid for.  All of them.  EVERY IDEA EVERYWHERE SHOULD GENERATE INCOME FOR THE IDEA COMER-UPPER-WITH.  <– That, my friends, is an official term.

And the stockings!  God Lord the stockings!!  There’s the shape of the stocking, the color scheme, the opening at the top, the method and mechanism of hanging it  by the chimney with care…that’s a whole cottage industry right there.  Stocking patent licensing fees would be horrendous.  Not to mention the necessary lawyers fees to help you figure out exactly which patents you’d need to license.  Sometimes we use a stocking hanger to hang our stockings.  Sometimes, we use a little screw with a u-shaped hook on the end that we have screwed into the underside of our mantel.  Sometimes, Santa just puts them on the floor in front of the tree, and honestly that’s what I’d request in a Patented Christmas Universe because it would save me some of the fees.  Right?  Right.  I’m nothing if not frugal!

Christmas, of course, is not patented.  In fact, the original Christmas was the exact opposite of a patent.  God sent a baby down to live among us, a baby that, rather than exact a fee from us, would pay a fee for us.  He, in the words of that old hymn, paid it all.

There’s a lesson in there somewhere.

Peace on Earth | Music & Lyrics by Big Daddy Weave

Peace on Earth goodwill toward men
And men have sought it from the start
I felt it when I asked you in
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart

Peace on Earth the angels said
As peace lay in a manger bed
And not the peace that this world gives
But God with man has come to live

Peace on Earth goodwill toward men
And men have sought it from the start
I felt it when I asked you in
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart

Not to end all earthly war as countless souls were longing for
But through this blessed holy child
God and man are reconciled!

So Peace on Earth goodwill toward men
And men have sought it from the start
I felt it when I asked you in
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart

And empty was this heart of mine
And I longed for peace I could not find
But finally I finally I laid down my pride
Now peace on earth lives here inside!

Peace on Earth goodwill toward men
And men have sought it from the start
I felt it when I asked you in
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart
Now Peace on Earth lives in my heart

Merry Christmas,

IPTT

NPR: Why Is This An Issue?

As God is my witness, I will never understand why companies think they own the data I store with them.

I used this analogy in an online article (which is no longer linkable on eLegalTechnology.org, bummer) called Occam’s Razor and the Cloud, and it has to do with those storage places.  Yeah, the ones that dude is suing that show over.

In order for Instagram to think it owns what I put on it’s servers, then the local Climate Controlled Storage place would have to claim ownership my great Aunt Bertha’s hideous couch that I’ve put there for safekeeping until I can bequeath it to one of my children when they leave me for college.

“But wait”, you say.  “That’s preposterous!”

Exactly.

Just sayin’,

IPTT

*NPR = Not Patent Related