United States Patent: 6368227 I cannot find any evidence that this address is spoofed or that this idiotic patent doesn’t exist. HELP!

A method of swing on a swing is disclosed, in which a user positioned on a standard swing suspended by two chains from a substantially horizontal tree branch induces side to side motion by pulling alternately on one chain and then the other.

Found by JW Elliott

  1. Aaron says:

    Thanks for reminding me! I’ve got to go file for that patent on winding the chain and then spinning around till it unravels.

  2. Gary Marks says:

    This “inventor” is just a sicko. He’s obviously planning to use this patent as a ruse for watching children at play. When the police come to question him about why he’s hanging around the park watching the kids, his excuse will be “to make sure no one is infringing on my patent.”

    OK, I’ll admit that’s a bit of a reach, but this is pretty strange.
    Can you say “we need patent reform,” boys and girls?

  3. Steven Tate says:

    242601 June 1881 Clement
    5413298 May 1995 Perreault

    2 related patents

    Primary Examiner: Nguyen; Kien T. With a name like Nguyen it makes you wonder if we are outsourcing our patent office to save money. j/k

  4. Bill Hoyt says:

    See the last page of the patent where it is shown cancelled:
    Reexamination Certificate Issued under 35 USC 307,
    “As a result of reexamination, it has been determined that:
    Claims 1, 2, 3, and 4 are cancelled.”
    (Thankfully someone wised up!)

  5. david says:

    “When the police come to question him about why he’s hanging around the park watching the kids, his excuse will be “to make sure no one is infringing on my patent.”

    In NYC is a crime for an adult to be present in a playground without a child. The fine is $1000.


    Who said the police state is not here? Also look at the new Heckscher playground just finished in Central Park. The jungle gym construction is made in only one color, gray, and in concrete/bricks and chains. Get that kid accustomed to the new police state at an early age. Also, the park has artificial turf! Seriously, not joking. No real grass for kids. And, there are no trash cans in the park either. Who ever built and designed this park has disgraced children. I couldn’t find a photo of this park on the internet. The park will open officially on May 17. I will take some picures (actually, can’t. gotta go with my son) and post them on Cage Match.

  6. Jim Scarborough says:

    Um, yeah. An attorney wanted to demonstrate to his son just how messed up the patent system is.

    As long as we’re talking about old /. stories about patently absurd patents, NCR’s patent on the Internet comes close to taking the cake. It’s that or the patent on exercising cats with a laser pointer (5443036).

  7. Robert Nichols says:

    Funny that this was allowed. Notice he only patented the side-to-side motion, not normal back and forth swinging. Possibly this was shy it was allowed. The US Patent office has a rich tradition of allowing the patently absurd, as long as no prior claims are violated and it has not been documented as being in the public domain.

    I have this picture in my head of a six-year-old swinging from side-to-side, and getting a cease-and-dissist letter by a team of suited lawyers.

  8. cheese says:

    I managed to find this on their site. I was inclined to believe this was bogus until I found this:

    United States Patent and Trademark Office OG Notices: 02 July 2002

    Commissioner Ordered Reexamination

    6,368,227, Reexam. C.N. 90/006,289, Ordered Date: May 21,
    2002, Cl. 472/118, Title: METHOD OF SWINGING ON A SWING, Inventor:
    Steven Olson, Owner of Record: Steven Olson, St. Paul, MN,
    Attorney or Agent: Peter L. Olson, St. Paul, MN, Ex. Gp.: 3712

    I’m really getting SICK of “patent-squatters” (I’m applying for the rights to that phrase, by the way )

  9. cheese says:

    It’s looking more true by the minute…


  10. rctaylor says:

    You can have a patent, but you still have to litigate infringement yourself. Owning a patent doesn’t mean squat if it doesn’t hold up in court. Good luck getting a patent law firm taking this case.

  11. CygnusTM says:

    Apparently the “inventor” is a five-year-old whose father is a patent attorney.


  12. piako says:

    this is why courts are in place b/c if anyone were to sue over the patent the judge would laf his arse off and say no soup for you patent man haha

  13. david says:

    Patent no. 7,895,099:

    Wiggle your ass from side to side as you fart into the wind. This disperses the noxious gas more evenly instead of the previous direction of directly behind. It causes the body to play the emitted air like an instrument causing a chain of reactions like a flute fluctuates the surrounding air.

  14. Dennis Wright says:

    Aaaaargh! I’m too late. Someone beat me to the lateral swing patent! I was just about to file it. Bet they’ve beaten me to the “use of an upturned plant pot as an emergency fez” patent too. It’s not my day!

  15. Mike says:

    Ummm…. This patent was filed by a five year old whose father is a patent lawyer. 🙂

  16. Heinz Meiner says:

    How funny!

    BTW, you are riding a horse that has been dead since 2003. The patent was reexamined and all claims have been cancelled.

    Nevertheless, it IS funny, that it was initially granted.

  17. Steven Olson says:

    Reading the comments on here is very amusing. Yes I was 5 when I asked my dad to file that patent, and no I wasn’t trying to find a way to watch kids on the playground. I’m 17 now, a senior in high school, and am just now discovering how much of a stir this caused in the patent world.


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