Patenting a software

  • #1
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Hello all:

Are we able to file a patent application for a software ? Or we can only file it for an algorithm ? Like for example an encryption algorithms

I have a family member wants to file one at the us patent office and I am trying to give some advice.

Is it worth the time that we are going to spend on it ?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
jrmichler
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Question 1:
Short answer: Yes.

Longer answer: Check the (assuming you are in the US) US Patent Office site at: https://www.uspto.gov/patents-getting-started/patent-process-overview#step2, plus see a good discussion at: https://www.uspto.gov/about-us/news-updates/examination-software-patents.

Question 2:
This is definitely a MAYBE. Is it worth spending time and money to get YOUR VERY OWN PATENT? Don't laugh, this is a very real reason. Is there somebody that is willing to give you money for the software, or rights to the software? Are starting a business, and need financing? People who finance startups place a high value on patents (and patent applications). This is one of the largest real world reasons to apply for a patent.

Note that it is possible to apply for a patent by yourself without an attorney. The USPTO has guidelines for doing exactly that. It is not a good idea if you need a patent that will stand up to attack by Big Bad Corporation, Inc., but if your needs are more modest, it is a viable option.

In any case, it is well worth your/their while to spend some time doing a patent search. Your patent search will not mean much legally, but it can tell you if somebody else thought of it first, in which case the idea is not patentable.
 
  • #3
berkeman
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Are we able to file a patent application for a software ?
I was under the impression that software is usually protected via copyright, not patent, but I could be wrong.

Paging @berned_you
 
  • #4
Vanadium 50
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Don't we need someone who is an expert in Lebanese patent law?
 
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  • #5
berkeman
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Don't we need someone who is an expert in Lebanese patent law?
Good point. But unless there is a huge market for this program in Lebanon, he may be asking about international patents/copyrights...
 
  • #6
Vanadium 50
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He may be thinking that. But that's not what he's writing. Again, we're back to the perennial PF game "Guess what the OP wanted to ask".
 
  • #7
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Thanks
No, i am not asking about Lebanese patent system , I am asking about United States patent system

By the way I am from Syria living currently in Lebanon

Best
H
 

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