Let’s look at three examples:
This is a copy from a patent with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) logo. Note that the USPTO is not directly involved with the design of any device that is shown on the cover.
This is a full-size print, and you can tell by seeing where they put the logo on the first page. As you can see in the bottom-left photograph, the USPTO was used to place the “patent” logo and date of publication on the first page. They could not have done this, because they never actually received a patent from Apple. The logo on the first page of the reprint clearly shows the USPTO logo of the year 1978. The patent itself may be much older, because the U.S. Patent Office hasn’t been on the Apple computer for over ten years, but clearly the USPTO has a history of being in charge of patents. As you can see in the second photo, the first page has an asterisk and the year of the first publication at the top.
Here’s another copy, this time from an earlier patent with the U.S. patent office logo, but no patent number. Notice the difference between the cover and this one:
This is a close-up showing the USPTO logo without the arrow. The USPTO logo is clearly present here. Apple also used this logo to advertise on the home page of its website as recently as 2011 (see below in “Why the USPTO Logo is the “Apple Logo””).
Here’s a close-up from 2008:
Here’s one from 2002:
Here’s the same image, with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office logo on the cover (left), the date of publication (right), and no copyright (the text “Patent number US-6,937,489 issued in the United States on December 26, 2001. Patent number U.S. Patent 2,627,987 issued on October 15, 2005.)
These are all the way back on Page 11, where the USPTO logo is on the first page, the date of publication is on the bottom right, and there is no copyright in the date of publication at the bottom.
I would assume that when the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office first started putting the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office logo on its cover, they
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