Making and Sharing Clothing

Much like the other areas of free and open-source design we have discussed, embracing open-source clothing provides you with far more options that you are accustomed to as a conventional consumer. Because of some vagaries of intellectual property law, the designs of clothing cannot be protected. In the fashion industry, innovation is fast because there is a general lack of artificial intellectual monopoly (Boldrin and Levine, 2008), and it is relatively easy to alter fashion design (Raustiala and Sprigman, 2012). This helps to explain why fashion is constantly changing styles (i.e., clothing companies cannot rely on 20-year patent protection, so they must innovate to keep selling products). When you look ...

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