L'Office américain des brevets confirme que l'IA ne peut pas détenir de brevets

US Patent Office Confirms AI Cannot Own Patents

In a context where theartificial intelligence (AI) is gradually infiltrating various sectors of innovation, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has just clarified its position on a delicate question: can we consider AI systems as inventors within the current legal framework? The answer, as confirmed byUSPTO, is a categorical no, thus underlining the preponderant importance of humans in the innovation process.

L’USPTO has published updated guidelines after a series of public discussions aimed at collecting different points of view on this issue. The decision rendered states that although machines equipped withAI cannot be designated as inventors, people using these technologies must nevertheless declare their use when filing a patent. This implies that the use of a system ofAI by an individual does not call into question his ability to be recognized as an inventor, provided that he makes a significant contribution to the creation of the invention.

It is self-explanatory that simply asking a system toAI generating an invention or supervising its operation does not qualify a person as an inventor. L’USPTO emphasizes that to be eligible for a patent, the individual must have played an active and significant role in the creative process. This could result in the formulation of a specific problem for which theAI offers solutions, but simply supervising an AI or recognizing the relevance of its result is not enough to establish copyright.

The position taken by theUSPTO was not done without antecedents. In 2020, the office rejected a request made by researcher Stephen Thaler who wanted to register the system ofAI which he developed, known as DABUS, as an inventor on a patent application. This decision was affirmed by American courts, thus emphasizing the need for direct human intervention in the invention process. Furthermore, theUSPTO initiated, in collaboration with the US Copyright Office, a series of public consultations to develop guidelines on the management of contributions from theAI in patent and copyright applications.

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This clarification of theUSPTO highlights the challenges and opportunities posed by the integration ofartificial intelligence in the field of innovation and intellectual property. It reaffirms the importance of human contribution in the legal recognition of inventions and outlines the contours of the future coexistence between man and machine in the field of intellectual creation.