06.25.17

Gemini version available ♊︎

The US Patent Office (USPTO) Should Now be Headed by Drew Hirshfeld, a Patent Examiner Who Rose to the Top, Not a Lawyer Like Joseph Matal

Posted in America, Patents at 10:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Drew Hirshfeld
Reference: Drew Hirshfeld at USPTO

Summary: Donald Trump’s Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, pushes to the top the patent microcosm rather than technical people who are equipped with the knowledge and experience to run the Office as well as Michelle Lee did

WE were sad to learn about Michelle Lee leaving (she was likely pushed out), but her initial successor — even if only temporary — was somewhat of a relief to us given some of the potential candidates. Drew Hirshfeld, given or based on his official biography, looked like a decent person and a scientist without any obvious conflict of interest. We may be wrong (something may be conveniently omitted from the public record), but he deserves the benefit of the doubt. Sadly, however, that did not last long. Apparently he wasn’t enough of a “swamp” material for Trump’s administration.

“Drew Hirshfeld, given or based on his official biography, looked like a decent person and a scientist without any obvious conflict of interest.”Looking back at the past 3 weeks’ information, having taken stock of some of the press coverage and specialised blogs like Patently-O, we would like to report as succinctly as possible about the situation at the USPTO, which sets the pace for patenting in the world (more so than the EPO, even before Battistelli ruined it).

“The former Google lawyer with a reputation for fighting ‘patent trolls’ resigned as head of US Patent office,” said this report in its headline. We agree with this description of hers. We wrote over a dozen articles about her amid the witch-hunt and we are grateful for what she has done in the Office. She will be widely regarded among industry (maybe not the patent ‘industry’) as a good Director. Kudos for that!

“Apparently he wasn’t enough of a “swamp” material for Trump’s administration.”TechDirt too wrote about her departure, calling it “Unfortunate” (in the headline). To quote the relevant bit: “She seemed to be doing a great job all around — though patent trolls and the group of patent lawyers who love the trolls were campaigning about her — and it appeared she would stick around. That would be a good thing. For all the craziness going on in the government right now, having competent leadership at the USPTO would be one less thing to worry about. But… now it’s being reported that Lee has suddenly resigned and sent a goodbye email to staff. That’s bad news on the patent front.”

TechDirt then adds something about Trump: “As I type this, of the 559 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, Trump hasn’t even named a nominee for 431 of them. That number rises to 456 if you include nominees who have been announced but not formally submitted. And that doesn’t even get to the 63 nominations that haven’t yet been confirmed. Adding the new USPTO director to that pile may mean no new USPTO director for…. who the hell knows how long.”

So much for making things “Great” again…

“Coalition of Chaos” is what Brits might dub this.

“So much for making things “Great” again…”As Patently-O reminded us last month, there are ongoing cases involving Lee, e.g. Shore v Lee. Well, there’s also SAS Institute Inc. v Lee, which goes to the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) — a subject we shall leave aside until another day or a later opportunity (it’s would be a distraction to delve into it if USPTO leadership is our main focus right now).

There were also these “Remarks By Director Michelle K. Lee at the George Washington University School of Law”. Here are the remarks on the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB): “What work lies ahead? Our top priority today is to make sure the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s AIA proceedings are as effective and as fair as possible–within our Congressional mandate.”

“Watchtroll is the leading source of personal attacks on Lee, including innuendo that she was corrupt in some ways.”AIA and PTAB have been very good. Industry generally loves both. Not the patent ‘industry’ but the real industry. Watchtroll is already attacking PTAB (personal attacks) again, as many times before. It spend a lot of time, space, energy etc. also attacking Lee. We’ll never forget what it did. It’s quite a vandalistic site, seeking to enrich the patent ‘industry’ (like patent trolls) at the expense of everyone else and at the expense of science, technology, medicine etc.

Patently-O was actually quite disturbed by Watchtroll’s style and wrote that “Mr. Quinn goes on at length about alleged personal unethical conduct, and makes some sharp accusations and personal attacks that I don’t want to leave any impression that I agree with.”

Watchtroll is the leading source of personal attacks on Lee, including innuendo that she was corrupt in some ways. We are deeply disgusted to see IBM, for example, aligning with this terrible site. It says a lot about IBM…

As for IAM, it is making no pretenses about its motivations in the above case. Yes, the trolls’ voice wants SCOTUS to rule for patent maximalism (which it probably won’t). Lee won’t be around to see the outcome (not at a professional capacity), but at least we now know who took/inherited her place, at least on a temporary basis (interim if not permanent upon confirmation).

“Lee won’t be around to see the outcome (not at a professional capacity), but at least we now know who took/inherited her place, at least on a temporary basis (interim if not permanent upon confirmation). “Patently-O initially wrote, some time earlier this month: “There has been no word from the White House or Commerce Department on a successor. It is unclear to me at this point whether Tony Scardino (current acting deputy director) or Drew Hirshfeld (current Commissioner of Patents) will be tapped as Acting Director.”

It then clarified by stating that Drew Hirshfeld is now the Acting Director of the USPTO. This sounded reassuring at the time, but then came some update from IAM and from Patently-O, saying (based on Trump’s Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross) that Joe Matal is the USPTO Director in the meantime (interim).

“They should choose technical people (like Lee or Hirshfeld), not the likes of Battistelli.”Lloyd, the software patents booster and pro-patent trolls spinner from IAM, bemoaned this (apparently a lack of ‘sufficient’ deform at the Office) and Patently-O soon clarified that it’s a patent lawyer, not an examiner who is technical. It said. “join me in welcoming a lawyer into the PTO senior management.”

This is bad. They should choose technical people (like Lee or Hirshfeld), not the likes of Battistelli. Enough of those lawyers!

Here is what Patently-O wrote:

But the skirting of guidance leading to Mr. Matal’s appointment isn’t one of those legal problems. I hope the Patent Bar will join me in welcoming a lawyer into the PTO senior management. Mr. Matal is a lawyer with recent stand-up court experience. I hope that he will translate his experience into infusing the PTO with an appreciation for the importance of procedure, and respect for rule of law, to fair and accurate decisionmaking.

He previously worked with the notorious Senator Jeff Sessions (AG under Trump), but he also was, according to his USPTO profile, “principal staff drafter and negotiator of legislation that became the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act.”

His only academic background is a law degree. Not a good sign.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. [Meme] Some People Are Just Above the Law

    A lot of people are still flabbergasted or at least baffled/miffed to discover that some people are in effect above the law; not even Europol and Interpol can apprehend and hold them accountable; that needs to change. Had Benoît Battistelli worked for France Télécom S.A. (not the EPO), would he be arrested? What about António Campinos and his drunk son?



  2. NPR and PBS, Both Funded by Bill Gates, Try to Save Him

    Bill Gates continues to corrupt the media and corrupt social control media (such as Twitter) using his money



  3. The EPO Must Forsake Its Diplomatic Immunity and Quit Pretending It's About Patent Law (or Any Law)

    There's no sign of the EPO actually trying to obey the law and correct the mistakes of the past; to make matters worse, the existing administration adds yet more corruption to an already-massive pile while dismissing any form of oversight



  4. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, September 23, 2021

    IRC logs for Thursday, September 23, 2021



  5. Links 24/9/2021: Ubuntu 21.10 Beta, Istio 1.11.3, and More Milestones for Steam Deck

    Links for the day



  6. [Meme] President Campinos Addresses the Legacy of Battistelli's “Strike Regulations”

    A sequence of four EPO memes about those infamous and unlawful “strike regulations” that Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos have exploited to abuse thousands of workers



  7. [Meme] Bill Gates Keeps Digging Himself Deeper in the Grave Each Time He Speaks

    These sorts of ‘interviews’ with Gates’ own propaganda mills (he also pays Twitter now) aren’t going to improve his image; people aren’t infinitely gullible (Source)



  8. Linux Foundation and Other 'Diploma Mills' Say There's Demand for Their Products in Their New 'Research' (Marketing)

    The so-called ‘Linux’ Foundation (LF), together with edX, are basically marketing their services and products, but this is disguised as 'research' (a false narrative widely parroted by shallow and paid-for media partners of theirs), piggybacking brands like “Linux” and buzzwords like “Open Source” (even when they promote proprietary things, e.g. memorisation of proprietary GUIs)



  9. [Meme] The EPO's Carte Blanche and 'Diplomatic Immunity' Card

    EPO staff is being taken for another ride by António Campinos and his cohorts, whose popularity among staff has likely gone down to sub-zero levels already (even faster than Benoît Battistelli)



  10. As Expected, Minimal Pseudo Compliance From EPO Management, Adding Insult to Injury

    SUEPO Central, the core of the staff union of EPO staff (almost 7,000 workers at the EPO, most of whom are SUEPO members), has strong words about the EPO's attitude and stance, which is perhaps unsurprising but still extremely disappointing



  11. Links 23/9/2021: PostgreSQL 14 RC 1 and MidnightBSD 2.1

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/9/2021: More UPC PR Stunts and IBM (Poettering) TPM for Linux

    Links for the day



  13. The EPO is on the Run (Escaping Negative Press Coverage)

    Aside from tens of millions of euros granted to media and academia (to keep them complicit or silent about EPO corruption, which also implicates the EU) there’s also SLAPP and threats against staff representatives; but Members of the European Parliament are becoming interested in what’s really going on in Europe’s second-largest institution, so this utter waste of EPO money (manipulating the press and gaming universities’ research) might in itself become a scandal sooner or later



  14. [Meme] Lowering the Standards...

    It's time for another round of fluff at the EPO, this time without even travelling (PR-over-'ViCo')



  15. Gemini HTTP/HTML/Web Proxies and Self-Hosting Your Own Proxy

    Gemini protocol (gemini://) and the fast-growing Geminispace (expected to exceed 2,000 known capsules by year’s end, in effect quadrupling in a single year!) are possible to access using Web browsers, at least for those who do not have Gemini clients/browsers just yet; today we examine and give an outline of the options



  16. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, September 22, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, September 22, 2021



  17. Links 23/9/2021: GNU Parallel 20210922, Moroccan Propaganda From EPO

    Links for the day



  18. Links 22/9/2021: Google 'Upstream First' in Linux and New Maui Report

    Links for the day



  19. Links 22/9/2021: Mesa 21.2.2, GNOME 41 Released

    Links for the day



  20. Socially- or Corporate- or Centrally-Controlled Surveillance, Censorship and Throttling is Not Media

    The 'social control media' situation is getting out of hand; in YouTube, for example, there's a broad revolt against strict editorial control by Google and in Twitter it seems like ordinary users aren't shown so much to people who actually "follow" them



  21. Links 22/9/2021: Panfrost's OpenGL ES 3.1 Conformanc and NovProg 3.2.0

    Links for the day



  22. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, September 21, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, September 21, 2021



  23. Agents of Monopoly: WIPO is Lobbying for or Reinforcing Microsoft Monopoly by Pushing Its Proprietary Software and Formats

    The World Intellectual Property [sic] Organization — like the EPO (where António Campinos outsourced IT systems to Microsoft) — is choosing the most notorious/corrupt ‘tech’ ‘company’ (cult) instead of open standards and, as the links above show, this is nowadays done inside the United States and outside the United States as well, raising legal questions/ire



  24. Links 21/9/2021: Windowsfx 11, New Chrome, and LF PR Noise

    Links for the day



  25. [Meme] The EPO-EUIPO “Good Brother” Network

    Jobs as bribes at the EPO and EU(IPO) are a lingering problem



  26. Links 21/9/2021: Samba 4.15 and Ubuntu 14.04/16.04 Support for 10 Years

    Links for the day



  27. Richard Stallman's First Public Talk (Delivered in Person) in Years, Now With a Free Format

    Full talk now available. The organisers of the conference have uploaded to YouTube, so we’ve converted everything to a free/libre format (and last night only an excerpt was published here).



  28. [Meme] The Best Quality Propaganda

    The António Campinos-led EPO is still a never-ending propaganda machine; the media isn’t fact-checking or investigating anything, so of course that propaganda goes largely unchallenged and the propagandists (like Joff Wild) profit from it



  29. Preparations for the Next Series and Further Improvements in IPFS and Gemini

    Gemini space (or Geminispace) continues to expand quite rapidly and we're utilising alternatives to the Web in order to improve access to information; at the moment EPO publications are our priority



  30. Links 21/9/2021: Peg-E 1.3.0, CUPS 2.4 Coming Soon

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts