BP#6 Smartphone Design Patents

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Currently Apple has a lawsuit against Samsung for allegedly copying the look of the iPhone. Apple is gunning for all of the profits from the phone as a settlement. Samsung however is arguing that the design is only a small part of what triggers their sales. They claim that the inside of the phone is a large part of the sales and that the wiring is not anywhere near the same as that of the iPhone. Several companies have stepped up and filed supports for both sides. Facebook and Google supported Samsung and Tiffany and Adidas supported Apple. According to the social contract theory from the perspective of Hobbes human condition absent from any political order is in the state of nature. People’s actions are bound by their personal power and conscience and that people knowingly give up some of their rights in order to feel safe and have a civil society. It is difficult for people to give up part of their liberty but it is necessary to maintain order. In class we discussed laws, taxes, online surveillance and briefly patents. In this scenario Apple is an example of having their rights violated. I agree that design patents are important but I do not think that Samsung should have to give 100% of their profits. Another way to look at it is that Samsung is okay with giving up some of their liberty in order to be civil- but only as much as everyone else gives. They are willing to compromise in order to avoid a state of nature.


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