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Old January 5, 2016   #61
Cole_Robbie
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What other type of craftsman is bullied and shamed into releasing their workmanship for free?
I have an idea. Before you release a new OP tomato, you should plaster photographs of it everywhere. Then, when someone else inevitably tries selling your variety, even if they take their own photo, we'll sue them over the photo, claiming it is substantially similar to yours. IP law rewards those who are aggressively litigious.
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Old January 5, 2016   #62
Fred Hempel
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LOL. Great idea! Post so many types of photographs that even if they take a unique photograph, you can claim it was so much like a photograph that you took that it was essentially copied.

Actually, though, I am fine with the limitations that go with releasing OP varieties, and I am fine with not having control of Blush and other OP varieties I have released. And, it is nice to have such a large diversity of freely available OP genetics to work with.

But that doesn't mean I want to pledge to ONLY produce freely available OP varieties with little means to recoup development costs (or horrors, with little means to make a profit).


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Originally Posted by Cole_Robbie View Post
I have an idea. Before you release a new OP tomato, you should plaster photographs of it everywhere. Then, when someone else inevitably tries selling your variety, even if they take their own photo, we'll sue them over the photo, claiming it is substantially similar to yours. IP law rewards those who are aggressively litigious.
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Old January 5, 2016   #63
bower
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The OSSI pledge may be well-intentioned response to real problems in agriculture, but I would argue it is silly to think it does anything for OP breeders (other than freely providing them with material they can use to breed with, strictly for fun).

This is what is requested:

Through our Pledge, OSSI asks breeders and stewards of crop varieties to pledge to make their seeds available without restrictions on use, and to ask recipients of those seeds to make the same commitment.

How can a document calling on a breeder to immediately release all of their varieties with NO RESTRICTIONS protect a breeder? It does nothing to reward innovation of a breeder.

Frankly, it gives all power to seed producers and retailers who now have to pay nothing to the breeder. The retailers now have a nice story (Emancipated Seed!), but the breeder has been stripped of rights.

What other type of craftsman is bullied and shamed into releasing their workmanship for free?
I went back to their FAQ page, and I think it may have changed since I first saw it.
In any case you are right that the pledge would prevent a PVP or other intellectual property rights. "Incompatible with "Plant Breeders Rights" crikey. Incompatible with rights but not opposed to arrangements..
"Is OSSI against intellectual property rights?

Users of OSSI seed have the freedom to reproduce that seed for their own use and for sale, and to use the seed in research and breeding. In that respect, the OSSI Pledge is incompatible with the intellectual property rights as currently applied to plants such as utility patents, Plant Variety Protection, Plant Breeders Rights, and Material Transfer Agreements that limit the rights of seed recipients to produce seed for replanting, for sale, and for use in research or breeding. OSSI is not opposed to arrangements that require sharing the benefits of new varieties with the breeder, as long as those arrangements do not restrict the freedom to use the seed.
"

As far as I know, the only intellectual property that restricts the freedom to use seed including OP's and commercial hybrids is when there's a genetic tag involved. No one else is imposing restrictions, or am I wrong? So why isn't the elephant squarely named? I'm sure there's much more to it because I don't know about the existing protections nor what is happening with Material Transfer agreements either.

I am personally opposed to the patenting of DNA, and certainly to banging out proprietary genetic tags with a CRISPR to own the progeny of the seed, which may be up and coming. OSSI certainly covers that but also toss away all intellectual property rights.
Indeed reading a little further, I see that they initially intended to develop a license, but instead went with a non-legally binding 'pledge' - a pledge that bans other licenses.
Alright after a load of reading I'm back where I started. It isn't clear to me!

Fred, you're wrong that other craftsmen aren't bullied and shamed into giving up work for free. Rest assured, the garage band that refuses to play benefit concerts will be ostracized.

Last edited by bower; January 5, 2016 at 06:27 PM. Reason: used italic to show the quote
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Old January 5, 2016   #64
Fred Hempel
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Excellent point!

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Fred, you're wrong that other craftsmen aren't bullied and shamed into giving up work for free. Rest assured, the garage band that refuses to play benefit concerts will be ostracized.
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Old January 5, 2016   #65
bower
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Originally Posted by Fred Hempel View Post
LOL. Great idea! Post so many types of photographs that even if they take a unique photograph, you can claim it was so much like a photograph that you took that it was essentially copied.

Actually, though, I am fine with the limitations that go with releasing OP varieties, and I am fine with not having control of Blush and other OP varieties I have released. And, it is nice to have such a large diversity of freely available OP genetics to work with.

But that doesn't mean I want to pledge to ONLY produce freely available OP varieties with little means to recoup development costs (or horrors, with little means to make a profit).
Love that photo IDea!
I agree with your POV exactly Fred, it is wonderful to give back to the pool of amazing OP's and heirlooms we have drawn from to create something new.

I would not myself use your (or someone else's) recent OP's to make a hybrid F1 for sale either, while there you are wondering how to pay for the development. You should be doing that, not someone else.

It makes sense to me to create your own breeding lines in house and release some as OP's and keep some others private which are used to make exceptional F1 for sale, if that's the obvious way to pay for the project. (or horrors, make a profit!)
If I happened to find an exceptional F1 of two heirloom or OP varieties not my own creations, I wouldn't keep the parentage a secret. If the OP was yours, I'd tell you about it. If the OP was public domain, I'd tell everybody, and let anyone who wants to do the work, make F1 seed if it is worthwhile to do it.
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Old April 7, 2016   #66
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If you have bred a truely unique OP variety that combines traits not present in other varieties to create a new product, you can get a utility patent to protect your variety. PVP is expensive and does not provide much protection for what it costs.

The other route, as several people have mentioned, is to develop only F1 hybrids that you market the seeds or plants directly or have a signed contract with one or more commercial seed companies to produce and market your hybrids with a specified royalty returned to you for seed sales. I know some people are against hybrids, but they give protection and monetary returns to the variety developer and are the ultimate starting point for another breeder to begin development of new varieties, either OP or hybrids. I am breeding tomato hybrids with the fasciated gene common in many heirloom tomatoes in the whole range of dfifferent fruit colors with and without stripes on the fruits and am incorporating disease resistances, with emphasis on late blight resistance. Once these reach the market, they will be available for any of you to use in your breeding to create new varieties.
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Old April 7, 2016   #67
nicollas
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What are you plans for your hybrids ? You plan to delegate seeds production, or are you selling the parents to a big seed producer, or another path ?
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Old April 7, 2016   #68
RandyG
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I retired from a public university tomato breeding program in 2008 and am continuing my breeding work with specialty type tomatoes in my emeritus status through the university. I have a lot of experience since the 1980's in releasing hybrids as exclusives to major seed companies with royalties returned for seed sales. I will continue to release through the university the hybrids and breeding line parents of the hybrids.
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Old April 7, 2016   #69
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What are you plans for your hybrids ? You plan to delegate seeds production, or are you selling the parents to a big seed producer, or another path ?
Last I knew was that Randy was contracting out for seed production,please see here

http://tomatoville.com/showthread.ph...=Randy+Gardner

And when I say above he sent me seeds for those varieties,I mean LOTS of seeds and the ones that had a lot of genes for this and that,such as Plum Regal,were used by others in their own breeding projects.I had made a special offer for all three varieties and it was a very popular offer.

Randy,I'm so very glad to see you posting and please do more as your time allows.I can't talk much tomato genetics,you know that,but can I assume that it's back to VA to the old family farm for the summer? And does the fiddle go with you?

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Old April 7, 2016   #70
bower
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Wonderful that you're continuing your work in retirement. Your work often comes up in discussions here, especially as regards disease resistance traits. It's a pleasure to see you here in person.
Quite a few of us here (like me) are just getting our toes wet, we really appreciate the insights and opinions of experienced breeders. Thank you.
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Old April 7, 2016   #71
Fred Hempel
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Randy, Your stuff is really great, and we definitely appreciate your contributions!

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Originally Posted by RandyG View Post
If you have bred a truely unique OP variety that combines traits not present in other varieties to create a new product, you can get a utility patent to protect your variety. PVP is expensive and does not provide much protection for what it costs.

The other route, as several people have mentioned, is to develop only F1 hybrids that you market the seeds or plants directly or have a signed contract with one or more commercial seed companies to produce and market your hybrids with a specified royalty returned to you for seed sales. I know some people are against hybrids, but they give protection and monetary returns to the variety developer and are the ultimate starting point for another breeder to begin development of new varieties, either OP or hybrids. I am breeding tomato hybrids with the fasciated gene common in many heirloom tomatoes in the whole range of dfifferent fruit colors with and without stripes on the fruits and am incorporating disease resistances, with emphasis on late blight resistance. Once these reach the market, they will be available for any of you to use in your breeding to create new varieties.
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Old April 7, 2016   #72
nicollas
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Ah, didn't connected the dots

Not sure about big companies beeing interested by amateur hybrid varieties with tender skin and without a long list of disease resistances
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Old April 10, 2016   #73
dwhughes
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DNA fingerprinting is now available and cheap, and this is one reason I doubt that the "big companies" currently steal varieties, rename them, and claim they are hybrids.

It is just too easy to prove that they did it. Plus, it would require a company conspiracy to steal an OP variety and re-name it, which would also increase the risk even more. The company can't assume that all folks in the production chain would go along, without blowing the whistle.
This is probably the key to fair compensation. If someone copies an obscure piece of music and renames it, fans of the original will quickly find it - and it is easy to show the legal system that it is a copy. When USB devices for DNA analysis are widespread, tomato fans will be able to spot copies and report them. Protection along the lines of copyrights would probably make sense: people can make copies (save seeds) for personal use, but for commercial reproduction a license is required.

Dave
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