I have filed a provisional patent for my holographic system. This is a field crowded with, sometimes literally, smoke and mirrors, systems that fail to work, or deliver the promised effect. This has led to great scepticism for new approaches. To provide proof to the public that my invention can work, I'm considering allowing others to construct simple proof of concept models. One idea is to allow the one time use as a paid perk for crowd funding. Would this use, basically an online contract, weaken my patent rights? As in I'm not really controlling the licensees, it's come one, come all.

1 Answer 1


Essentially you would be giving away very narrow licenses. This would only "weaken" your patent inside the scope of these licenses.

But another point to consider is that you will be creating prior art for further improvements which you might not be able to patent afterwards.

And people might copy your invention for personal use even though infringing your patent (US, in Europe personal use is allowed) and suing somebody for building a single copy without license is ... unpractical at best.

There is an issue with crowd funding though, I think stating in the campaign that the thing you are funding through the crowd will not be available for public use could be a problem. I'd suggest further research into that area, else your campaign might fail early.

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