Congrats to our friends at ez-pz for getting a utility patent on their incomparable Less Mess Happy Mat. It's a great product, from a great team, and now with more intellectual property protection. We applaud their innovation, spirit, and tenacity to see this through!
It takes a lot to develop new products, even more to develop innovative products. To bring a truly new idea to market takes tremendous effort and heart - and there are a lot of pitfalls. At the same time, new products that are made well cost more to produce - it's just economics. New stuff is made in lower quantities and with less optimization. And they cost more to market because no one has ever heard of it before.
While all of that is happening and one is focused on creating the best possible product and sharing it with the world it has become incredibly easy for factories to take any idea and start churning out inferior copies that parasitically capitalize on one's original efforts.
These copycats don't have to pay for development, testing, research, marketing – they just have to make something that looks like yours and that they can claim passes safety tests (many of which are self-administered).
There are precious few protections against this copying.
• One is a patent (and good lawyers to fight with it). The market has been flooded with inferior direct copies and slight variations on their designs. This patent now gives ez-pz one more important tool in their arsenal, but using it takes time and resources from what they started out to do: make great products for families.
• The other is customers buying the original. This supports the teams' efforts and hopefully buys better quality and service. This is the most important protection against copying. Without this, companies like ez-pz (and us) do not have the resources to continue to innovate and develop new products. And in the saddest, worst cases, new companies do not have the resources to fight the copycats and thus cannot continue.
This patent is important for a fight that you will likely never see against their copycats. But more important? Buying from innovators, originators, and especially those with patents means that those teams can continue to build new things and make a difference. How you buy matters. That's how new and better stuff gets made!
If you're considering buying a Less Mess, Happy Mat know that they are only available from ez-pz and please buy from them. If you're considering any off-brand product that appears to be a few dollars cheaper, please take a minute and consider what you get for that extra money.
-Matt, Co-Founder, Mixed Pears