Another 10 Stupid American Patents

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted millions of patents since its establishment in 1790. While many of these patents have led to groundbreaking innovations, some have left us scratching our heads in disbelief. In this article, we present another 10 stupid American patents that will make you question the ingenuity of some inventors.

1. Patent US6368227: Method of Swinging on a Swing

In 2002, a patent was granted for a method of swinging on a swing, which essentially described the process of swinging sideways and pulling alternately on the chains to build momentum. It’s hard to believe that someone felt the need to patent such a basic childhood activity.

2. Patent US6025810: Hyper-light-speed antenna

This patent, granted in 2000, claims to have invented an antenna that can transmit signals faster than the speed of light. However, according to the laws of physics, nothing can travel faster than light, making this patent not only stupid but also impossible.

3. Patent US6293874: User-operated amusement apparatus for kicking the user’s buttocks

In 2001, a patent was issued for a device that allows users to kick their own buttocks. The apparatus consists of a leg strap and a foot strap connected by a resilient elongated member. While it might provide some amusement, the practicality and necessity of this invention are questionable.

4. Patent US5934226: Bird diaper

Granted in 1999, this patent describes a diaper designed specifically for birds. The inventor claims that the bird diaper can be used to prevent pet birds from making a mess in the house. However, the thought of putting a diaper on a bird seems not only ridiculous but also impractical.

5. Patent US7255627: Method of playing rock, paper, scissors

In 2007, a patent was issued for a new method of playing the classic game of rock, paper, scissors. The patent describes a variation of the game that includes additional hand gestures such as “fire” and “water.” It’s difficult to see how this variation improves upon the original or requires patent protection.

6. Patent US8676581: Helmet for preventing brain trauma caused by heading a ball

This patent, granted in 2014, describes a helmet designed to protect soccer players from brain trauma caused by heading the ball. While player safety is important, the invention seems to overlook the fact that heading is an integral part of the sport and that proper technique and training can reduce the risk of injury.

7. Patent US6360693: Animal toy

Granted in 2002, this patent describes a toy for animals that consists of a pole with a rope attached to one end. The animal is supposed to chase and catch the rope, which is dangled in front of it. The simplicity of this invention makes one wonder if it truly deserves a patent.

8. Patent US6004596: Sealed crustless sandwich

In 1999, a patent was issued for a sealed crustless sandwich, which is essentially a sandwich with the crust removed and the edges sealed. While the invention might appeal to picky eaters, it hardly seems worthy of patent protection.

9. Patent US6960157: Brassiere with attached bottle holders

This patent, granted in 2005, describes a brassiere with attached bottle holders, allowing the wearer to carry bottles hands-free. While the invention might have some practical applications, such as for nursing mothers, it seems more like a novelty item than a patentable invention.

10. Patent US6592425: Device to prevent telephone cord entanglement

Granted in 2003, this patent describes a device that prevents telephone cords from becoming tangled. The invention consists of a weighted object attached to the end of the cord, which is supposed to keep the cord straight. However, with the advent of cordless and mobile phones, this invention seems to have little relevance today.

These 10 stupid American patents demonstrate that not all granted patents are groundbreaking or even necessary. While the USPTO does its best to ensure that only deserving inventions are granted patent protection, some questionable patents slip through the cracks. As we continue to innovate and push the boundaries of technology, it’s important to remember that not every idea is worthy of a patent.

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