Newsweek

Elon Musk, Toyota and the Case for Open Patents

Could making intellectual property available to everyone spur technology and economic growth?
Elon Musk, CEO and CTO of SpaceX, CEO and product architect of Tesla Motors and chairman of SolarCity, at an annual conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, attended by many of the world's wealthiest business people. Musk has called for a radical new approach to intellectual property.
GettyImages-479902152 Source: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Converting ideas into tangible products has long relied on patents. Even before the U.S. Patent Act of 1790, which gave 14 years of exclusivity to whoever owned a piece of intellectual property, we have relied on a stringent code of laws to

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