Posts in Government

Federal Circuit to Rehear Tafas and GSK v. Doll

On Monday, July 6, 2009, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (minus Judge Lourie who did not participate in the poll of judges) decided to rehear the claims and continuations rule challenge of Tafas and GlaxoSmithKline en banc.  Additionally, the CAFC has vacated the panel decision that awarded a victory to the USPTO.  The date of…

Sample DMCA Take Down Letter

It just came to my attention earlier today that someone had copied an entire article from IPWatchdog.com and posted it to their own website last week.  How is it possible that anyone doesn’t realize that you just cannot do that?  More likely, it is known that you cannot do that but people do it figuring they won’t get caught.  One…

Recording Industry Victory in Usenet File Sharing Case

The recording industry has scored gold in its court battle with Usenet, which advertises itself as a massive online file sharing community. See: Arista Records v. Usenet, 07 Civ. 8822 (S.D.N.Y. June 30, 2009) The case, filed back in 2007, pitted the record companies against Usenet, with the recording industry alleging widespread infringement of copyrighted recordings through downloading over the…

Senate Acts to Prevent USPTO Furlough or RIF

Last night the United States Senate passed a bill that authorizes the United States Patent and Trademark Office to shift funds between different USPTO accounts in order to avoid the Patent Office having to furlough or terminate patent examiners.  Under the Senate bill the USPTO would be able to shift funds from the Trademark side of the building, which is…

American Ingenuity Will Lead US to Prosperity

Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has been out in front on patent and intellectual property issues for years, and he is at it once again.  Senator Hatch has recently been very active with respect to writing op-ed articles explaining what all of us in the patent community have known for a very long time.  My hope is that his profile will…

Liberal Think Tank Says Patents Are Destroying the Planet

I was doing some searching online today regarding climate change and the vote that will take place tomorrow in Congress regarding the so-called cap and trade legislation that, if enacted, would raise the cost of electricity for every American family by an estimated $3,100 per year.  As I surfed around the web I stumbled on to what can only be…

Obscure Patents: KSR Does Not Mean Much

So much has been made about the United States Supreme Court’s decision in KSR v. Teleflex, which happened just over 2 years ago. Occasionally I like to take a look at how the Patent Office is handling KSR. Admittedly, this is not a scientific study, and is more aimed at having fun and perhaps also explaining so we never forget just how absurd the Supreme Court’s decision in KSR actually was. Those familiar with the KSR decision and history will recall that the non-patent experts on the Supreme Court, including Justice Antonin Scalia who openly admitted he didn’t understand patent law during oral arguments — calling patents “gobbledygook,” decided to completely do away with an objective, understandable and repeatable test in favor of a completely subjective test without any concrete boundaries. Yes, in their infinite wisdom the Supreme Court decided that the law of what is obvious should be conducted on a case by case analysis and an invention is obvious if it is “common sense.”

President Obama Intends to Appoint Kappos as PTO Head

UPDATED: 8:42pm ET At some point in time today, presumably after I nominated Alfred E. Neuman for PTO Director, President Obama announced that he intends to appoint David Kappos as the Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, a position that will make him the Director of the USPTO.  It was predictable that word of the nomination, or iminent nomination, would…

Nominating Alfred E. Neuman for PTO Director

While we continue to wait for President Obama to nominate an Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, otherwise known as the Director of the Patent Office, I figured it was about time to make another nomination, but who?  From what I hear, the rumor is that President Obama has made his selection but the vetting processing is taking a lot…

500 Million Patent Applications a Year?

The Wall Street Journal Online just published an article titled Why Technologists Want Fewer Patents, which will apparently appear in the June 15, 2009, edition of the paper on page A13, under the heading “Opinion.”  The article discusses the US Supreme Court agreeing to hear Bilski v. Doll, which will decide the fate of at least some business method patents,…

USPTO Needs Improved Work-flow Management

In 2006, Peter Orszag, the current head of the Office of Management and Budget, observed in an article he co-authored for the Brookings Institution: Because the U.S. is at the frontier of modern technological and scientific advances, sustaining economic growth depends substantially on our ability to advance that frontier. Orszag is, of course, correct. Unfortunately, without meaningful and near immediate…

Second Pair of Eyes Fails Innovation in the US

Monday I wrote about how the United States Patent Office is holding innovation hostage, and is treating applicants unfairly, at least insofar as some applicants seem to have their cases advance quickly and other applicants seem to wait for many years without any action whatsoever. I have gone on record saying that I believe the Patent Office is taking important…

Supreme Court Ignores US Constitution

By now you have probably heard that the United States Supreme Court lifted the stay Ordered by Justice Ginsberg late on Monday and the bankruptcy deal that will give Chrysler to Fiat, UAW workers and the US and Canadian governments is now clear to go through, most likely on Wednesday, June 10, 2009.  I will not call this deal a…

Saving US Innovation: More Patent Funding Needed

Yesterday I posted an article titled Innovation Held Hostage by the Patent Office.  In the article I detailed some troubling things I have learned regarding what appears to be best explained by patent examiners taking cases out of order.  The Patent Office is a first-in-first-out (FIFO) system, or at least it is supposed to be.  A couple patent attorneys have…

Senator Hatch Speaks at World Copyright Summit

What follows is a copy of the remarks of Senator Orrin Hatch, delivered at the World Copyright Summit earlier this morning at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC.  It is great to hear Senator Hatch discuss the importance of protecting intellectual property rights against the actions of infringers.  In my opinion, intellectual property rights are essential to guarantee continued…