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The woman who created the fidget spinner hasn't earned a single penny off her creation

The woman who created the fidget spinner hasn't earned a single penny off her creation

Catherine Hettinger invented what would become the fidget spinner back in the 90s, but her invention sadly didn't take off back then.

The fidget spinner is now a quintessential item that many of us have in our pockets to pass the time; however, the woman who created it never saw a single penny for her invention.

The little spinning things were all the range back in 2017, where you couldn’t leave the house without seeing someone twirling a fidget spinner between their fingers. Retailers sold tens of millions of the little gizmos and while some people loved them so much they ate them, others simply hated them and some people made heaps of cash selling them.

However, the toy's original inventor Catherine Hettinger never managed to cash in on the craze.

Catherine Hettinger invented what would become the fidget spinner back in the 90s, but her invention didn't take off back then.
Twitter/@MelissaOnline

She says she came up with the original idea for the fidget spinner back in 1993 and tried to pitch it to a number of toy retailers, including Hasbro, but they turned her down.

Catherine got a patent for her invention in 1997, but by 2005, it had expired as she couldn't afford the $400 (£330) renewal fee to hold onto the rights to the device, meaning anyone could make their own version or design of the fidget spinner without running into any legal issues.

Fast forward to 2014 and Scott McCoskery invented something he called the Torqbar, which was basically a fidget spinner.

He said he invented it because he wanted something to focus his hands on during meetings at work so he wouldn't fidget as much while his boss droned on.

Catherine Hettinger didn't cash in on her invention.
Unsplash

It would still take a few years before they really skyrocketed in popularity, but fidget spinners went on to become one of the most popular toys of the 'new 10s' (or whatever it is we're calling the previous decade).

Not holding the patent and not making the toys herself, Hettinger was left making absolutely no money out of the fidget spinner craze, which sold millions of toys around the world.

Despite not being able to cash in on the craze and struggling for money herself, Catherine told The Guardian back in 2017 that she was 'pleased' that people were enjoying the thing she created.

She also accepted that most inventions just didn't make money, though suspected things could have been very different if someone had just invested in her all those years ago.

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/@MelissaOnline / Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Topics: News, Weird, Money