San Diego Union-Tribune Opinion: Protecting creativity by stopping “Innovation Act”, by Bryan Pate
This post originally appeared in the San Diego Union-Tribune on April 9, 2015.
The most important thing we can do to protect innovation in America is to stop Congress from passing the so-called “Innovation Act.” If it becomes law, it could suffocate the engines of innovation that our economy relies on the most: inventors and entrepreneurs.
This law will have the unintended consequence of making the risk of starting a new company so far outweigh the benefits for many entrepreneurs that it will dramatically reduce the number of people willing to take on the struggle of bringing a new innovation to market. It will also undermine the ecosystem of investors, employees and partners who make patent-based startups viable. If that happens, then the few inventors who still want to bring a patent-based innovation to market will find themselves without the resources they need to make that happen.
I’m an American innovator and the CEO of ElliptiGO. Ten years ago, our co-founder, Brent Teal, and I started working on an idea. We wanted to develop a product that would deliver the benefits of running outdoors while eliminating the injuries running causes. In 2010, after five years spent inventing a new product, filing patents on our inventions, licensing patents from another inventor, developing prototypes, hiring employees and raising money to start the company, we introduced the world’s first outdoor elliptical bicycle. Now, more than 15,000 people are using their ElliptiGO bikes to enjoy running without impact. We are thrilled and humbled with our success so far.