D. Mendis – 3D Printing Enters the Fast Lane

D. Mendis – 3D Printing Enters the Fast Lane [July 2014] Intellectual Property Magazine, pp. 39-40 

There has been much attention lavished on additive manufacturing or 3D printing, as it is more commonly known.  The extension from commercial/enterprise to consumer 3D printing has grabbed the headlines and the imagination of the consumer in recent years.

Furthermore, the introduction of the low-cost consumer 3D printers into supermarkets such as Asda and electronic stores such as Maplin and PC World in the UK demonstrates that the trend is very much on the rise. While it may not be possible to print a bicycle or medical equipment at home, it will be possible to print fast moving consumer goods (FMCGs) such as toys and cosmetics with these desktop 3D printers that are currently on sale.

The article discusses the various issues and implications surrounding 3D printing and 3D scanning as it relates to FCMGs and questions what it means for IP law, in particular copyright law.