I spent the afternoon at Seattle University Law meeting with a mid sized delegation from Seoul National University’s Law School. Korea is currently undergoing a change in there legal system, currently a law degree in Korea is an undergrad degree BL with a graduate option for a LLM. Soon they will transition of a JD system that requires a general undergraduate degree before enrolling in law school. The delegations is here exploring several aspects of the JD system and focusing on intellectual property specifically. They are also meeting with MicroSoft, Perkins, UW and Intellectual Ventures.
Silverman lead a talk on IP and is a hard core history buff and made some great points on where soft IP comes from, printing patents. Printing patents, not the Statute of Anne, are the start of copyright. Printing patents were granted to publishers not to authors. The first printing patent granted was in the 1504 this was a tool of censorship not one designed to encourage new ideas.
The Statute of Anne came about in 1710 and replaced printing patents moving copyright for the first time from publishers to authors.
In the US, early patent were granted by legislatures. It was not until 1790 that patents could be granted by a state agency. Less then 70 patents were granted in the states or the collinies before 1787.
Very interesting talk and a great chance to talk to several practicing IP attorneys from Korea.