Anticipate This!™ | Patent and Trademark Law Blog

Mixing Golf Inventions with Reality TV: Brilliant!

Posted in General Commentary by Jake Ward on July 18, 2007


Americans love a good invention.  They also love their reality TV.  To capitalize on these interests, the television network ABC had developed the reality television show American Inventor.  Many independent inventors, for better or for worse, have participated in this show.  Even more viewers, including those in the IP blogosphere, watch the show on a regular basis.

Inventions and reality TV . . . what could be better (or worse), you ask?  Well, we happened across a show titled Fore Inventors Only this week on The Golf Channel.  This show narrows down, in full reality-TV glory, a field of individuals who have invented golf-related devices.  A cheap knock-off of American Inventor, or a brilliant concept whose time has finally arrived . . . you be the judge!

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  1. MJM said, on July 19, 2007 at 10:05 am

    Way back when, before everyone had Internet access on their desktop PC (let alone on their cell phone), I used to peruse the Patent Official Gazette on a weekly basis. From the beginning, I was amazed at the number of golf-related patents issuing every week. And many of them appeared to be issued to individual inventors rather than being assigned to any of the well-known golf companies (except, of course, the hundreds of utility and design patents for golf balls). Of course this phenomena probably is the result of several factors:
    1. avid golfers tend to have relatively high wealth, particularly disposable income
    2. avid golfers generally have a higher educational level than the general population
    3. perhaps most importantly, avid golfers will buy just about anything which they think might help their game – and since avid golfers know this, inventive golfers are easily convinced that their invention will sell millions

    Don’t believe #3? Ask an avid golfer, particularly one who plays at least two rounds every week yet still has a handicap of 15 or higher, how many drivers and putters he has at home. Heck, I’m an occasional golfer and I probably have at least 5 drivers and 5 putters.

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