Who Owns Student Created Intellectual Property? addresses issues raised by the University of Missouri’s claim on 25% ownership and two-thirds of the profits on an iPhone app named NearBuy, created by four U Missouri students and downloaded 250,000 times. The University backed off from these claims, revising its IP policy
to state that it will not claim an ownership interest in inventions created for school contests, by extracurricular clubs, or as the result of an individual’s initiative. However, if a student invention was created under a professor’s supervision or with the use of school resources or grant money, then the school can assert the same ownership right as it does for faculty inventions.
Think about this policy. The University taxes its most entrepreneurial students, the ones with demonstrated ability to create products, businesses, jobs, and wealth. After forced sharing of an early successful venture, what are the chances these students will return in 20 years to endow a chair, construct a new laboratory, or fund scholarships?