Image Credit: May Qi

Jie Qi, Carol Lin, May Qi, Ira Winder

Nomination is a resource built to explain (scary!) patent law using (not-scary!) panda comics. The website has three core parts: was born at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at the Harvard Law School by fellow Jie Qi, after she experienced patent issues of her own. One company tried to patent her work after a job interview and, in another case, a crowdfunding campaign backer successfully patented her and her collaborators’ product.

In communities known for innovation, patent issues happen more often than many of us know. Our hope is to share our knowledge so that others don’t have to suffer the fear and confusion that we did. shares important information that is often difficult to find and only learned through many conversations with experienced patent lawyers and inventors.

We believe that patent law is important for all creators to know—to understand the laws surrounding what we make empowers us to better share our work with the world.


Creator and Author:  Jie Qi, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School; MIT Media Lab; University of Tokyo
Author: Carol Lin, Harvard Law School Cyberlaw Clinic
Illustrator: May Qi, Brown University
Designer and Developer: Ira Winder, MIT

With legal support from:
Suffolk Law School Intellectual Property & Entrepreneurship Clinic
University of Southern California Intellectual Property and Technology Clinic
Harvard Law School Cyberlaw Clinic
Stanford Law School Juelsgaard IP and Innovation Clinic
BU/MIT Technology Law Clinic

Funded by:
Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School
MIT Media Lab

Special Thanks:
Ben Virgin, Caitlin Devereaux, Austin Stenberg, Jef Pearlman, Loletta Darden, Jessica Fjeld, JP Ellis, Andy Sellars and Joi Ito

Jie Qi is a designer, educator, inventor, and entrepreneur. She cofounded Chibitronics, which makes toolkits blending art with engineering, and is project assistant professor at University of Tokyo.

Carol Lin is an alum of the Harvard Law School Cyberlaw Clinic and holds a JD/MBA from Harvard Law and Business schools.

May Qi is a professional doodler and undergraduate at Brown University.

Ira Winder is an educator, researcher, and practitioner of computational methods for urban planning and systems engineering at MIT.