Playing cards inscribed with jokes
Kind Code:

A deck of playing cards (52 cards plus 2 potional “jokers” which are generally used as substitutes for lost originals) wherein each card in the four suits (Spades, Hearts, DIamonds and Clubs includes the distinct indicia thereon plus alphanmeric Ace through Ten plus Jack, Queen and King which by this invention are improved by including in the printing of each card, an individual paragraph of jokes on top of the alphanumeric symbols as a unity. This improvement augments all the traditional uses of playing cards by combining all the ancient uses of decks of playing cards with jokes.

Abrams, Donald (Clayton, MO, US)
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International Classes:
A63F1/00; (IPC1-7): A63F1/00
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Primary Examiner:
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Donald Abrams (Clayton, MO, US)
1. Combining production of decks of traditional playing cards of the four traditional thirteen card suit variety with jokes: each card being inscribed with a different joke.



[0001] This invention relates to traditional and ancient 52 “playing card” decks being inscribed with an equally traditional and ancient human recreation known as telling “jokes”.


[0002] The 52 card—four suit deck of playing cards which is used world-wide for playing games such as poker, bridge, pinochle, rummy and others have ancient origins and a traditional design on the playing side. The playing side consists of cards numbered one (the Ace), through 10 plus a Jack, Queen and King in each of four “suits”: spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs. Frequently spare cards called a Joker are also supplied by manufacturers of playing cards. Individual productions of decks of cards vary only in small, insignificant ways as to the shape of the numbers, the “suits” (spades, hearts, diamonds, clubs} or the drawings of the Jacks, Queens, Kings or Jokers.

[0003] The non-playing side of decks of cards are usually printed in some fashion with an artistic design or commercial advertisement which may have been accorded protection under the laws of copyright or individual design patents. No claim as to the non-playing side of “playing cards” is made in this application.


[0004] No one could properly claim protection under 35 USC 112 for the use of the 52 card four suit deck of cards because no one could claim to be the inventor or creator of those visuals nor of their use in any form, inasmuch as they are of ancient and traditional origin: spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs and the known manner in which they are used belong to the whole world almost as much as the concept of drinking water.

[0005] A joke which is able to be expressed in words and/or reduced to printed form (as distinct from “practical jokes” however demonstrated, or cartoons of visual form) are defined as a group of words designed to arouse laughter. Such Individual jokes are not subject to copyright unless a person is able to claim (and usually prove) that he or she is the creator. Absent this, the law does not afford even copyright protection to a joke: only the form of the individual presentation as the visual form of a book, a poster or some other format: even a card, playing or otherwise. No doubt even I will seek copyright protection for specific individual printed parts of my future production of decks of playing cards inscribed with jokes.

[0006] It is this process, this invention of mine combining two ancient forms of amusement into a single more desireable on going modern multi-use form for which I claim origination, invention and protection. Without this protection there is no incentive to bring this invention forward and to make it available to the world-at-large despite any varying views on such a need. It is true that this is a very simple invention and easily copied or duplicated. But simplicity is not a crtiterion for denying patent protection, but more the reason for granting patent protection to the inventor whose worthy creation and invention will surely be copied, if made public before legal protection is granted.


[0007] The scope and usefulness of this invention for which a design patent is sought is not to be underestimated merely because of its simplicity and ease of duplication. Humor and jokes are pervasive throughout the civilized world. It has been estimated that fully one-fourth of non-business related transmissions between individuals over the internet are Jokes. This is a matter of no small importance to people or the practice would not continue. Without question games of cards are the most universal of all games world-wide. A search reveals that no one has ever combined these two tradtions before into one easily useable form, each enhancing the use of the other. That is what this invention is designed to do, and that is why this is an application for a design patent. There are limitless numbers of jokes available to be used in this invention: millions of jokes from the past and millions of jokes in the future as yet uncreated. It is that factor which makes this invention a process, a continually refreshed process not limited by any individual copyright registrations, and not frozen in time as are many games It is however a process more like computer software, and should likewise be afforded similar protection under the patent laws.

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