What is a strategic publication?

The strategic publication (also known as a "defensive publication or "defensive disclosure") is a tool in Intellectual Property law (in the area of patents) in which technical content is deliberately published in order to be regarded as prior art for legal purposes. Whatever is part of the prior art is deemed to be known and thus loses its eligibility for protection as far as an application for a patent or other exclusive right is concerned.

The deliberate strategic publication of an invention results in the rights of use over the technology described being able to be used freely and permanently by everyone. At the same time it means that nobody is able to obtain a property right and thus restrict the freedom to operate of others. It constitutes a form of exploitation of an invention (such as, for example, an application for property rights or the maintenance of secrecy) which ensures that the creator will have the rights to use the technology on a permanent basis (ensures freedom to operate) while consciously forgoing exclusive rights.

Definition according to Henn:

"'Defensive Publishing' is the publication of one's own invention with the objective of destroying its novelty for patent-law purposes and thus preventing patenting by third parties and ensuring the free use of the invention on a permanent basis."
(Henn, Defensive Publishing, Carl Heymanns Verlag, Munich 2010)

Definition according to Lernbecher:

"'Defensive Publishing' describes the publication of an invention with the objective of creating prior art and thus preventing the granting of an exclusive right over this invention. [...] By the publication of an invention, the required novelty is destroyed or the inventive step is reduced so as to be below the required level." (Lernbecher (née Pangerl), Defensive Publishing, Gabler Verlag, Munich 2009)

Modular process

A process that can easily be adapted to individual requirements taking all legal aspects into consideration.