CEO of Tesla Motors Elon Musk announced the end of private patents today. In a personal blog post titled, “All Our Patent Are Belong To You,” (A nod to gamers) Musk writes, “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.”
Musk believes freeing Tela’s patents will allow for greater iterative innovation, allowing better competition against major auto manufacturers who continue to produce gasoline vehicles faster than consumers can choose carbon emissions-free alternatives.
“At best, the large automakers are producing electric cars with limited range in limited volume. Some produce no zero emission cars at all,” wrote Musk.
To conclude the blog, Musk suggests an open source action to release Tesla’s patents to the public will attract more forward-thinking engineers. He also suggests it could jump-start a larger market for alternative vehicles and fuels, solidifying a carbon-free future during an impending climate change.
The rogue move, while exciting, is not necessarily surprising coming from Tesla. Numerous innovative ideas have recently put Tesla in debate with state legislators over its right to deal directly with consumers instead of well-established dealership/franchise sale models. Such tactics have even led states to attempt to ban Musk from selling Tesla, including New Jersey with its own Governor Chris Christie fighting Musk’s hope of skirting state service taxes gasoline vehicles usually put on consumers from car dealerships. North Carolina and Missouri have also been working on such Tesla direct-sale bans.
Source: Elon Musk