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A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions

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A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions [#permalink]

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A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members. Universities, as guarantors of intellectual freedom, should encourage the free flow of ideas and the general dissemination of knowledge. Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

Which one of the following is an assumption that the argument makes?

(A) Universities are the only institutions that have an obligation to guarantee intellectual freedom.
(B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.
(C) Publication of reports on research is the only practical way to disseminate information concerning new discoveries.
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.
(E) If the inventions of a university faculty member are not patented by that university, then they will be patented by the faculty member instead.

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[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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New post 12 Oct 2017, 01:36
Hi broall,

I was tied up between option C & D but later on selected D.
can you explain both the options ?

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broall wrote:
A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members. Universities, as guarantors of intellectual freedom, should encourage the free flow of ideas and the general dissemination of knowledge. Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

Which one of the following is an assumption that the argument makes?


The argument is like this:

The author think that universities:
  • should encourage the free flow of ideas and knowledge (A)
  • shouldn't be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members

Premise: A university has a motive (B) to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery

Conclusion: Suppressing information (C) is incompatible with the university's obligation (A).

The missing link here is that "a motive" (B) and action (C) are totally different. Answer choice D fills this missing link well.

(A) Universities are the only institutions that have an obligation to guarantee intellectual freedom.
The argument includes no information about the role of universities as the only institutions that have an obligation to guarantee intellectual freedom. The problem with this option is the word "only"

(B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.
The argument doesn't have any concern about the profit from those inventions.

(C) Publication of reports on research is the only practical way to disseminate information concerning new discoveries.
This choice is irrelevant to the argument. Again, the problem with this option is the word "only"

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.
Correct as stated above

(E) If the inventions of a university faculty member are not patented by that university, then they will be patented by the faculty member instead.
The argument has no concern about the fact that those faculty members will hold the patent of those inventions.
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New post 12 Oct 2017, 03:20
Considering option D -

Actual Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive

Negated Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally not act on that motive

This mean if the university occasionally not act on the motive of suppressing the conclusion of the argument - "suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas. "
will not hold.

Am i right with the above analysis ?

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kunalsinghNS wrote:
Considering option D -

Actual Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive

Negated Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally not act on that motive

This mean if the university occasionally not act on the motive of suppressing the conclusion of the argument - "suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas. "
will not hold.

Am i right with the above analysis ?


I'm not sure wheather you are right. However, I think that negative technique doesn't work with assumption questions in general.
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New post 12 Oct 2017, 07:15
How will you negate option D ?

can you elaborate on that ?

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Re: A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2017, 07:36
kunalsinghNS wrote:
How will you negate option D ?

can you elaborate on that ?


Hi kunalsinghNS,

To negate choice D we should change "will" to "will not", which is what you correctly did.

broall - Negation technique is basically used for ASSUMPTION questions.

Thanks :)
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New post 12 Oct 2017, 21:33
I was tied up between option C & D but later on selected D.
can you explain how to implement "Negate" technique for this particular assumption question ?

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Re: A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions [#permalink]

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New post 18 Oct 2017, 11:13
kunalsinghNS wrote:
Considering option D -

Actual Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive

Negated Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally not act on that motive

This mean if the university occasionally not act on the motive of suppressing the conclusion of the argument - "suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas. "
will not hold.

Am i right with the above analysis ?

The problem with the negation technique is that some answer choices don't have obvious "opposites", and it's easy to come up with an incorrect negated statement.

kunalsinghNS wrote:
Actual Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive

Negated Statement - Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally not act on that motive

Putting the word "not" after occasionally could change the meaning, so I'd make it: "Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will not occasionally act on that motive."

The author concludes that a university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members since this would cause the university to suppress information. But if the universities are not actually going to act on their motives to suppress information, then the author's reason is no longer valid.
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New post 18 Oct 2017, 21:12
In this question i could narrow down the answers to options C and D. But i am still not convinced why answer option C is not right. Can someone please help me.

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A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members. Universities, as guarantors of intellectual freedom, should encourage the free flow of ideas and the general dissemination of knowledge. Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

Which one of the following is an assumption that the argument makes?

(A) Universities are the only institutions that have an obligation to guarantee intellectual freedom.
(B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.
(C) Publication of reports on research is the only practical way to disseminate information concerning new discoveries.
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.
(E) If the inventions of a university faculty member are not patented by that university, then they will be patented by the faculty member instead.

longhaul123 wrote:
In this question i could narrow down the answers to options C and D. But i am still not convinced why answer option C is not right. Can someone please help me.

Choice (C) does not have to be true. What if there are SEVERAL practical ways to disseminate information concerning new discoveries? The author argues that universities are motivated to suppress information until patent rights have been secured. Whether there is only one way to disseminate information concerning new discoveries or multiple ways, the author's argument still applies.

I hope this helps!
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New post 03 Nov 2017, 04:23
I wrestled with this question for a while. My only concern is what the negation means.

Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will NOT occasionally act on that motive.
-- To me, this sentence means the University may act on their motive all the time, not just occasionally. The use of the word 'occasionally' through me off. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated.
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nightblade354 wrote:
I wrestled with this question for a while. My only concern is what the negation means.

Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will NOT occasionally act on that motive.
-- To me, this sentence means the University may act on their motive all the time, not just occasionally. The use of the word 'occasionally' through me off. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated.

Quote:
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.

I understand your confusion here... if they are not "occasionally" acting on that motive, are they instead ALWAYS acting on that motive? But consider the following example:

    Wilbur constantly wants to eat burritos, but since they are unhealthy, he only eats them occasionally.

In other words, Wilbur will occasionally act on his desire to eat burritos. If I tell you that Wilbur does NOT occasionally act on those desires, do you think I'm trying to tell you that he eats burritos every time he gets the urge? Or that he always refrains from acting on those desires? The latter makes more sense given the context.

Sure, negating choice (D) might imply that the universities ALWAYS act on that motive, but this is not the best interpretation given the context. More importantly, you should be able to eliminate the other answer choices and realize that (D) is the best answer.

I hope that helps!
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Re: A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions [#permalink]

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New post 12 Nov 2017, 00:41
GMATNinja wrote:
nightblade354 wrote:
I wrestled with this question for a while. My only concern is what the negation means.

Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will NOT occasionally act on that motive.
-- To me, this sentence means the University may act on their motive all the time, not just occasionally. The use of the word 'occasionally' through me off. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated.

Quote:
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.

I understand your confusion here... if they are not "occasionally" acting on that motive, are they instead ALWAYS acting on that motive? But consider the following example:

    Wilbur constantly wants to eat burritos, but since they are unhealthy, he only eats them occasionally.

In other words, Wilbur will occasionally act on his desire to eat burritos. If I tell you that Wilbur does NOT occasionally act on those desires, do you think I'm trying to tell you that he eats burritos every time he gets the urge? Or that he always refrains from acting on those desires? The latter makes more sense given the context.

Sure, negating choice (D) might imply that the universities ALWAYS act on that motive, but this is not the best interpretation given the context. More importantly, you should be able to eliminate the other answer choices and realize that (D) is the best answer.

I hope that helps!


Hi GmatNinja,
I eliminated option D, as it says the universities will occasionally act. So, I moved to other choices and felt option B makes sense. Here, is my understanding of option B- since universities have a motive to suppress information until they are patented, so these motives somehow benefit the universities(monetory, outwitting competition...whatever).
Option B states that Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable(benefited) if patented. so, if the motives are not benefited , then suppressing information does not make sense. So, option B can be the assumption to hold the argument. Please help me in my understanding, where I am wrong

B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.

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GMATNinja wrote:
nightblade354 wrote:
I wrestled with this question for a while. My only concern is what the negation means.

Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will NOT occasionally act on that motive.
-- To me, this sentence means the University may act on their motive all the time, not just occasionally. The use of the word 'occasionally' through me off. Any advice on this matter would be appreciated.

Quote:
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.

I understand your confusion here... if they are not "occasionally" acting on that motive, are they instead ALWAYS acting on that motive? But consider the following example:

    Wilbur constantly wants to eat burritos, but since they are unhealthy, he only eats them occasionally.

In other words, Wilbur will occasionally act on his desire to eat burritos. If I tell you that Wilbur does NOT occasionally act on those desires, do you think I'm trying to tell you that he eats burritos every time he gets the urge? Or that he always refrains from acting on those desires? The latter makes more sense given the context.

Sure, negating choice (D) might imply that the universities ALWAYS act on that motive, but this is not the best interpretation given the context. More importantly, you should be able to eliminate the other answer choices and realize that (D) is the best answer.

I hope that helps!


Hi GmatNinja,
I eliminated option D, as it says the universities will occasionally act. So, I moved to other choices and felt option B makes sense. Here, is my understanding of option B- since universities have a motive to suppress information until they are patented, so these motives somehow benefit the universities(monetory, outwitting competition...whatever).
Option B states that Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable(benefited) if patented. so, if the motives are not benefited , then suppressing information does not make sense. So, option B can be the assumption to hold the argument. Please help me in my understanding, where I am wrong

B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.


Hi sunny91,

Let me take a shot:

A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members. Universities, as guarantors of intellectual freedom, should encourage the free flow of ideas and the general dissemination of knowledge. Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

-- I highlighted two parts in blue. Why? Because they are the reason why B, in my opinion, is wrong. The passage says that any discovery that has value should not be withheld from the public.

-- (B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented. -- Negated: (B) Most inventions by university faculty members would NOT be profitable if patented. -- Even if less than half are profitable, even if it is just one, the University would still withhold these inventions. Does this destroy the argument? Nope, it just restates what the University will do, and gives a figure for it.

Does this help?

By the way, GMATNinja, thank you for answering my question!
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New post 13 Nov 2017, 11:48
A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions of its faculty members. Universities, as guarantors of intellectual freedom, should encourage the free flow of ideas and the general dissemination of knowledge. Yet a university that retains the right to patent the inventions of its faculty members has a motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured. Clearly, suppressing information concerning such discoveries is incompatible with the university's obligation to promote the free flow of ideas.

Which one of the following is an assumption that the argument makes?

(A) Universities are the only institutions that have an obligation to guarantee intellectual freedom. -Exaggerated choice (only institutions)
(B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented. -The argument is not concerned about profits
(C) Publication of reports on research is the only practical way to disseminate information concerning new discoveries. -Argument doesn't talk about the ways to state the research
(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive. -Correct.If the universities hide the information, then they are definitely acting against the ethics
(E) If the inventions of a university faculty member are not patented by that university, then they will be patented by the faculty member instead. -out of scope
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New post 16 Nov 2017, 13:51
sunny91 wrote:
Hi GmatNinja,
I eliminated option D, as it says the universities will occasionally act. So, I moved to other choices and felt option B makes sense. Here, is my understanding of option B- since universities have a motive to suppress information until they are patented, so these motives somehow benefit the universities(monetory, outwitting competition...whatever).
Option B states that Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable(benefited) if patented. so, if the motives are not benefited , then suppressing information does not make sense. So, option B can be the assumption to hold the argument. Please help me in my understanding, where I am wrong

B) Most inventions by university faculty members would be profitable if patented.

(D) Universities that have a motive to suppress information concerning discoveries by their faculty members will occasionally act on that motive.

Thanks for the excellent response nightblade354!

Yes, the problem with (B) is that we don't need MOST inventions to be profitable. The argument states that a university would have a "motive to suppress information about a potentially valuable discovery until the patent for it has been secured." The university does not know in advance which patents will be valuable. They might suppress information about 100 patents... perhaps all 100 will end up being valuable, but perhaps only some (or none!) will be valuable. Regardless, according to the author, the universities are still motivated to suppress the information to avoid sharing POTENTIALLY valuable information.
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A university should not be entitled to patent the inventions   [#permalink] 16 Nov 2017, 13:51
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