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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi everyone, I’m J.D. Houvener, and welcome to the Bold Today Show, where you, the entrepreneur and business owner, get your daily dose of inspiration to make the world a better place. Today, we’re going to talk about one of my favorite inspirations in technology, and that’s Elon Musk. We all know him; he’s in the media, and he owns one of the coolest companies in the world called SpaceX. If you’re in the industry, in technology, or even a bit nerdy, I wonder if you saw a couple of weeks ago when the Falcon Heavy rocket lifted off from John F. Kennedy in Florida. This rocket is two times heavier payload than any other rocket in history and done so at three times less expensive. These guys are kicking butt, a really exciting part of innovation.

So, once you do your challenge today, if you haven’t seen the rocket, haven’t seen the video, go watch it. That’s your challenge. And even if you’ve seen it, watch it again because it’s just breathtaking to see.

Now, let’s talk about Elon Musk a little bit. He has been noted and quoted saying, “At SpaceX, we have no patents at all.” He says this very prominently and proudly because he believes that if they were to get patents and publish exactly what they’re doing, countries like China would just rip it off, and they would be competing with them straight away. What I want to get to is why this is relevant in the law and why he’s exactly right. What’s important about patent law and what you want to try to protect when you put a product out in the market is that when you sell a product, you want to make sure that it’s not reverse-engineered.

What’s unique about SpaceX is that they’re not selling a product to consumers, at least not yet. The only people they’re working with are government agencies, and there’s really no reason for them to get a patent on their technology because no one else is doing it exactly the way they are. So, they’re keeping everything as a trade secret in-house, and they’re being very careful about that. By keeping it as a trade secret, they can leverage that technology, keep it protected, and as long as they’ve got the right employment documents, security measures, and confidentiality reports, they can do it just like that.

Again, share the video with your friends, comment below what your experience was when you watched the video, and I hope this was a great learning experience about trademarks and patents. Thanks for listening to the Bold Today Show. I’m your host J.D. Houvener. Go big, go bold.

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at