We sell signal flags, which are in the public domain. They`re the flags used by ships to communicate back and forth. Each flag represents a letter of the alphabet, and each one is a standardized pattern and set of colors. They`ve been around for 300 years.
The one advantage we have is that nobody can shut us down for infringing on their patent or trademark. Anyone is free to make and sell these signal flags.
What we quickly discovered during our proof-of-concept stage, is that it isn`t at all easy to make these flags in a quality way. So we had to discover and invent all sorts of things. Each of those might be subject to a process patent.
But what we learned, here on SuN, is that when you file a patent application you must disclose the secret things involved that you`re trying to protect. Others can view the application and "borrow" your methods. Then you have to go broke suing everyone else.
We decided that the more people who decide to copy our idea, the larger the public awareness field. The more people who become aware of the flags, the more who would be searching to buy them.
From there, we have longevity, quality, price, and customer service on our side.
So the bottom line is that we believe we have several major advantages to selling something that can`t be patented.
By the way, I`d wonder if there`s such a thing as a standard broom or jump-rope. They`ve maybe been around for lots of years, but they`re not "found in nature." Someone had to invent them. :-)