Turns out Sony owns the creepiest TV patent ever

Screenshot from a Sony patent
Brb, getting this printed as a T-shirt (Image credit: Sony)

Patent filings often offer a tantalising glimpse at what weird and wonderful inventions tech brands have up their sleeves. Whether or not they'll ever come to fruition hardly matters – it's just fun to know that Apple is working on teeth-powered AirPods or Sony wants to make controllers with collapsible joy joysticks. But it turns out the latter brand has also filed one of the most dystopian patents we've seen.

The 2009 patent, which has recently resurfaced on social media, describes a form of advertising that we hope never, ever becomes the norm. In it, TV viewers are only able to skip an advert by shouting the name of the brand. Yep, crying 'McDonald's!' is the only way to make the Big Mac disappear. (Check out the best Apple patents for some slightly less terrifying ideas.)

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Daniel John
Senior News Editor

Daniel John is Senior News Editor at Creative Bloq. He reports on the worlds of art, design, branding and lifestyle tech (which often translates to tech made by Apple). He joined in 2020 after working in copywriting and digital marketing with brands including ITV, NBC, Channel 4 and more.