AIPLA Quarterly Journal 43.1

Announcement Description

Take a look at an interesting article in the AIPLA Quarterly Journal.

Social Network Analysis of Trade Secrets and Patents as Social Relations Members Only

David W. Opderbeck

This article employs the empirical tools of social network analysis to examine the “property as social relations” approach to intellectual property. Social network analysis seeks to describe and model society and culture based on the connections between agents in a network. A “property as social relations” perspective suggests that property rights emerge out of and help construct social relationships. But things become murky when this perspective is applied to basic intellectual property problems. One problem is the relationship between trade secrets and patents. In trade secret law, the social aspects of information have long been recognized. This intuition is confirmed by social network analysis. In fact, a notion of “social rivalry” permeates trade secret law. By contrast, in patent law, information continues to be viewed almost exclusively as a non-rivalrous economic commodity. Social network analysis demonstrates that the “social” qualities of an innovation are largely stripped away when the innovation moves from the trade secret domain to the patent domain. It is unclear, however, whether a “property as social relations” approach to patents would achieve the sorts of results its advocates hope would obtain.








Created at 11/18/2013 12:17 PM by Janet Craycroft
Last modified at 11/18/2013 12:17 PM by Janet Craycroft