Smit & Van Wyk Patent, Trademark & Registered Designs

Boondoggles

Intellectual Property Attorneys

Boondoggle is a either a project that is considered a waste time and money or a government-funded project with no purpose other than political patronage. The word Boondoggle became famous in 1935 during the Great Depression. The term arose from a New York Times report that more than $3 million had been spent on recreational activities for the jobless. These activities included crafts classes, where the production of “boon doggles” (Gadgets made with cloth or leather) were taught.

Government Boondoggles usually involve large numbers of people and heavy expenditure. Failed projects can be allowed to continue for long periods, as senior management are often reluctant to admit that they allowed the project to fail. If the cost of a project overruns the profit it is declared a Boondoggle, which does not necessarily mean the project had no benefit.

Examples of Boondoggles:

Interstate 180, United States
A 21km freeway intended to serve an Illinois steel mill that closed soon after the freeway was completed. Roughly 2000 to 2500 vehicles use the road per day. It has one of the lowest traffic loads of any Interstate highway in the United States.

World Trade Center, New York, United States
By 1975 the World Trade Center lay half-empty in spite of 25 000 employees relocated to the complex. They were destroyed on September 11, 2001.

Suvarnabhumi Airport, Thailand
Labelled a Suvarnabhoondoggle (Golden Boondoggle)
An extremely long planning cycle, cost overruns, allegations of corruption, criticized for its poor construction.

Sydney Opera House Australia
The cost of construction ballooned over 1400%.

RCA “SelectaVision”
Their video disk system project started in the 1960s and continued for nearly 20 years, long after cheaper and better alternatives had come to market. Estimated spending of about $750 million, commercially unviable system, bankruptcy in 1988.

Home / Blog / Boondoggles

Patent Attorneys
It is highly recommended that your claims be written by a qualified patent attorney or patent agent. The patent attorneys at Smit & Van Wyk provide a wide range of patent-related services across multiple industries and fields of technologies, including patent drafting, filing and prosecution.

Mauritius Trademarks
Mauritius trademarks recognise the Nice Classification of goods and services, and allows for multi-class filing. Mauritius trademarks are valid for 10 years from the filing date and renewable for periods of 10 years each upon payment of the renewal fee.

Franchise Attorneys
Franchising legal advice is specialised and differs from other areas of law, thus you need find yourself an attorney that specialises in this specific type of law. Franchise attorneys represent the franchisor, as well as the franchisee. 

PCT National Phase Patents
The PCT National Phase is the second of the two main phases of the PCT procedure. It follows the international phase and consists in the processing of the international application before each Office of (or acting for a Contracting State) that has been designated in the international application.