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The Branding of the American Mind

How Universities Capture, Manage, and Monetize Intellectual Property and Why It Matters

Jacob H. Rooksby

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The first real exposé of how universities have trademarked, copyrighted, branded, and patented everything they do.

Universities generate an enormous amount of intellectual property, including copyrights, trademarks, patents, Internet domain names, and even trade secrets. Until recently, universities often ceded ownership of this property to the faculty member or student who created or discovered it in the course of their research. Increasingly, though, universities have become protective of this property, claiming it for their own use and licensing it as a revenue source instead of allowing it…

The first real exposé of how universities have trademarked, copyrighted, branded, and patented everything they do.

Universities generate an enormous amount of intellectual property, including copyrights, trademarks, patents, Internet domain names, and even trade secrets. Until recently, universities often ceded ownership of this property to the faculty member or student who created or discovered it in the course of their research. Increasingly, though, universities have become protective of this property, claiming it for their own use and licensing it as a revenue source instead of allowing it to remain in the public sphere. Many universities now behave like private corporations, suing to protect trademarked sports logos, patents, and name brands.

Yet how can private rights accumulation and enforcement further the public interest in higher education? What is to be gained and lost as institutions become more guarded and contentious in their orientation toward intellectual property? In this pioneering book, law professor Jacob H. Rooksby uses a mixture of qualitative, quantitative, and legal research methods to grapple with those central questions, exposing and critiquing the industry’s unquestioned and growing embrace of intellectual property from the perspective of research in law, higher education, and the social sciences.

While knowledge creation and dissemination have a long history in higher education, using intellectual property as a vehicle for rights staking and enforcement is a relatively new and, as Rooksby argues, dangerous phenomenon for the sector. The Branding of the American Mind points to higher education’s love affair with intellectual property itself, in all its dimensions, including newer forms that are less tied to scholarly output. The result is an unwelcome assault on the public’s interest in higher education.

Presuming no background knowledge of intellectual property, and ending with a call to action, The Branding of the American Mind explores applicable laws, legal regimes, and precedent in plain English, making the book appealing to anyone concerned for the future of higher education.

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The Branding of the American Mind

Jacob H. Rooksby

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Reviews

Reviews

[E]minently readable and eruditeRooksby's attempts to bring back balance and sanity to a situation that seems almost out of control are detailed and well argued.

... an important and unique contribution to higher education scholarship and policy.

One of the benefits of Rooksby’s book is that it is written with the nonspecialist in mind. In fact, he has made the book accessible to those who are in the driver’s seat at institutions of higher education— the administrators, trustees, and student affairs professionals.

The Branding of the American Mind provides a cogent, thoughtful account of an important and underappreciated development: US universities’ steady embrace of intellectual property rights. In addition to thoroughly describing this troubling phenomenon, Professor Rooksby offers a promising path toward tempering the role of trademarks, patents, and copyrights in academia and reinvigorating public values in higher education.

Jacob Rooksby’s book presents a master tour of the many forms of intellectual property that implicate campus life—copyright, patents, trademarks, trade secrets, Internet domain names, the right of publicity. More importantly, Rooksby situates these types of intellectual property in law, practice, and academic custom. No other single volume has ever addressed all these topics, read so well, or set out issues so authoritatively.

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About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
5
x
8
Pages
392
ISBN
9781421420806
Illustration Description
4 graphs
Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments

Chapter 1 – Intellectual Property, Higher Education, and the Public Good
Of Mice and Money
Public Goods and Private Goods: Higher Education and Intellectual Property
Private

Preface
Acknowledgments

Chapter 1 – Intellectual Property, Higher Education, and the Public Good
Of Mice and Money
Public Goods and Private Goods: Higher Education and Intellectual Property
Private Rights, Public Goods, and the Role of Institutional Agency
Why Intellectual Property Law and Policy Matter to Higher Education
Outline of the Book

Chapter 2 – Intellectual Property Explained
Copyright
Patent
Trademark
Trade Secret
Internet Domain Names
Right of Publicity

Chapter 3 – University
Rolling Heads, Rolling Tide
The Emergence of Trademark Protection in Higher Education
Trademark Rights Accretion in Higher Education
The Harms That Come from Trademark Rights Accretion
Trademark Rights Accretion and the Public Good
Higher Education's Trademark Enforcement Itch
Trademark Enforcement and the Public Good
Private Rights, Public Goods

Chapter 4 – University Patents Under the Sun
Our Bodies, Their Genes
University Engagement in Patenting and Technology Transfer
Pre-1980 Activity
Post-1980 Activity
Institutional Intellectual Property Polices and Structures Affecting Patenting
University Patenting and Technology Transfer Today
Myriad Choices
Sue U.
Universities and Patent Reform
Private Rights, Public Goods

Chapter 5 – Copyright on Campus
Designs on Your Design
Copyright Ownership and Use in Higher Education
Company in the Classroom
Digital Dilemmas
Private Rights, Public Goods

Chapter 6 – In Pursuit of Brand: Names, Domain Names, Images, Slogans, and Secrets
A Bear of a Brand
The Power of Brand
New Names, New Meaning
Expanding Domains
EDUCAUSE and the.EDU
College and University Battles for Cyberspace
Higher Education's Online Brand and the Public Good
Made in Their Image
Insert Catchy New Slogan Here
Keeping Secrets
Private Rights, Public Goods

Chapter 7 – Private Rights in the Public Interest: A Path Forward
Stopping the Accretion: Bringing Sanity Back to College and University
Trademarks
Patent Law Made University Friendly
From Claiming Copyright to Claiming Commons
Pulling Back from Brand
Implementing Intellectual Property Change on Campus
Private Rights in Service of the Public Good

Appendix

Notes

Index

Author Bio