EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.02.18

The Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC) Needs to Instruct the Patent Office to Stop Treating Applicants as Customers/Clients

Posted in America, Patents at 12:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

That makes as much sense as classrooms viewing pupils as “customers”

Chair

Summary: The USPTO is being abducted by the Big Litigation lobby, just like the EPO (with Battistelli and Team UPC); sadly, this merely dooms the Office, which is supposed to serve science and technology and relies on scientists and technologists to submit high-quality patent applications

LAST month we wrote about USPTO fees being altered. In whose favour? Might Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes reviews (IPRs) become more expensive still in an effort to discourage filers? The truth of the matter is, Iancu is a destructive force at the Office; he’s serving the litigation ‘industry’ (which he came from).

Later this week “[o]n Thursday, Sept. 6, the Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC) will hold a hearing to discuss the latest USPTO proposals to set or adjust patent related fees. The event will be held at the USPTO’s main campus and will be webcast,” Patently-O wrote. Who will be listened to? “Interested members of the public are invited to testify at the PPAC hearing about the proposed patent fee adjustments. Those wishing to present oral testimony at the hearing must submit a request in writing no later than Aug. 31,” Patently-O added, so it’s too late already.

“The CCIA went further, noting that the USPTO now calls applicants “customers”…”Sadly, Mr. Iancu (Trump’s choice of Director) makes the PTO seem as rogue as the EPO, at least sometimes. Never mind the fact that Iancu’s own firm had worked for Trump before the Trump Administration offered him the job…

A "Strategic Plan" was released by Iancu some days ago even though it was just a draft which reaffirmed suspicions that Iancu was like a ‘mole’ for the litigation ‘industry’.

“In the 2014-2018 Strategic Plan [of the USPTO] the word “customer” appears 12 times,” says the CCIA. The USPTO hasn’t quite recovered from its disastrous downtime (which it tries to distract from with this “Strategic Plan”); refunds are still a sordid mess and the reputation of the Office was severely harmed. The face-saving messages from Iancu only angered stakeholders further; he made no sincere apologies and did not explain the cause of the downtimes (this was not the first), instead framing them as a “feature”, not a bug.

The CCIA went further, noting that the USPTO now calls applicants “customers” (like the EPO calls them) and there’s a lot more:

At the heart of these flaws is the USPTO’s embrace of an inappropriate viewpoint. The USPTO treats applicants as “customers,” catering to them first—sometimes at the expense of the public. The USPTO first took this approach in the early 1990s, when it was first required to fund agency activities with user fees. The agency most explicitly adopted it during the dot-com period, stating that the “primary mission of the Patent Business is to help customers get patents.” While the USPTO later retreated from this statement, the viewpoint appears to be re-emerging in the wake of the USPTO’s authorization to set its own fees. In the 2014-2018 Strategic Plan, the word “customer” appears 12 times; in the draft 2018-2022 Strategic Plan, the word appears 70 times. The USPTO is not a business. Taking a view that treats applicants as customers implicitly places their needs and desires over those of the public.

This has real harms. Prioritizing applicants runs the risk of granting patents that shouldn’t have issued, tying up broad areas of technology and rendering known technology unusable. While invalid patents can be challenged, challenges remain expensive and time-consuming. This is particularly problematic when invalid patents are granted in newly developing areas like artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, augmented reality, or additive manufacturing, where smaller innovators may not have the resources to challenge patents and may decide to innovate in other areas—or not at all.

If the USPTO becomes an agency of the litigation ‘industry’ rather than servant for science and technology, people who actually create things will simply view it as a foe. This is the risk Iancu now takes and the Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC) needs to take that into account later this week. Whose office is it anyway?

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Monopoly Abuse, Still: Microsoft Pays Projects to Embrace/Move to C#, GitHub and Visual Studio

    Microsoft's greatest of efforts to lull regulators into inaction and fool us all into thinking that things have changed are undone by actual behaviour, which is abusive, anti-competitive and just... typical Microsoft



  2. Links 4/7/2020: Grml 2020.06 and diffoscope 150 Released

    Links for the day



  3. [Humour/Meme] Don't Let a COVID Crisis Go to Waste When You're Eager to Find Excuses for Many Layoffs and Shutdowns

    Microsoft business units that were defunct (long-failing, well before COVID-19) are being thrown out and Microsoft exploits a virus to rationalise these decisions while spicing up media coverage with "Hey Hi" (AI) and "virtual" experience or Facebook (to give the false impression that nothing really goes away)



  4. Free Software Tackles Political Issues. Political Tactics Are Also Being Weaponised Against Free Software.

    Divide-and-rule tactics seem to have been exploited to weaken collaborative work on Free/libre software; the response to these tactics needs to start with realisation that this is going on (even if it's done in a somewhat clandestine nature)



  5. Offence and Racism

    o those in positions of power and privilege (financial) you are controllable by guilt; dividing us and causing us to feel guilt and fear (over potential offence) is a powerful social control mechanism and pretext for dismissal, censorship, humiliation



  6. Links 3/7/2020: TrueNAS 12 Beta 1, Librem 13 Product Line

    Links for the day



  7. [Humour] European Patents Only Useful Outside the Legal Framework?

    Patents that aren't valid in the eyes of courts would best serve patent trolls that settle out of courts, en masse



  8. Microsoft's Share in Web Servers Rapidly Falls to Just 4.5% (Falling More Than 5% in a Single Month)

    Microsoft's share as measured at Netcraft (de facto authority in this area) is rapidly declining; expect IIS to go the way of the dodo some time in the coming years



  9. The Lock-downs Are Over and Still Zero Media Coverage About EPO Scandals and Corruption

    The appalling state of journalism in Europe (and to some extent in the world at large) means that the EPO's management can get away with all sorts of horrible crimes and fraud; the silencing of the media is, in its own right, quite scandalous



  10. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, July 02, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, July 02, 2020



  11. “Microsoft's Deadly Love” by Alessandro Ebersol (Agent Smith)

    Full credit goes to PCLOS Magazine for publishing this good piece, which we’re reproducing



  12. Links 2/7/2020: Microsoft Partner Says GNU/Linux Share in Desktops/Laptops at 4% Even After Lock-downs, OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 and Mageia 8 Alpha 1 Released

    Links for the day



  13. Why People Should Never Ever Use DuckDuckGo

    DuckDuckGo is another privacy abuser in disguise; the above forum thread enumerates key reasons



  14. After 2 Years and 2 Days António Campinos is a Perfect Leader, Fostering EPO Abuses While Smiling

    EPO corruption persists, but this time the corruption enjoys better marketing/PR and complicit (or at best silent) media



  15. [Humour] As If Monopolies for Life Will Save People's Lives...

    The mentality of monopoly or the mindset of patent maximalism has been quick to exploit the deaths of half a million



  16. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, July 01, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, July 01, 2020



  17. IBM-Funded FSF Censors Itself on Software Patents

    Donald Robertson’s article bemoaning and openly condemning the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) over software patents, which it illegally grants in some cases, was modified a week later; and why? One can only guess… (but remember that the FSF’s foremost sponsor is lobbying against 35 U.S.C. § 101 and for software patents)



  18. [Humour/Meme] Remember That As Recently as Last Year Microsoft Was Still Shaking Down and Even Suing Companies Over 'Linux Patent Infringement'

    There's no 'new Microsoft' except a (better at) lying Microsoft; its covert actions tell us a lot about its ongoing hatred of GNU/Linux, which it is assaulting in new and more sophisticated ways



  19. Contrary to Common Misconceptions, Free Software is More 'Corporate' or More 'Enterprise-Grade' Than Proprietary Abandonware (All Proprietary Software Will Die)

    Free software can leverage the superficial and bland boardroom lingo/slang to promote itself; it would definitely harm or dilute/weaken the terms which proprietary software giants like to leverage against us



  20. Social Control Media Will Not Exist One Day

    Digital obsolescence and Internet bitrot — that’s what Social Control Media is really good for; as many Google+ ‘users’ (useds) found out, they’re just being ‘farmed’ for their ‘content’, which is neither valuable nor resilient (definitely of no value to Google)



  21. What Freedom of Software Actually Means to Us

    Liberty or libre (freedom) is about more than brands or personalities, as names or institutions or individuals can change or completely perish; but concepts outlast superficialities



  22. [Humour] Thinking Beyond Just the Linux Brand

    We're supposed to believe that because "Linux" is dominant we finally have freedom; but almost all the very big companies that are using GNU/Linux leverage it for freedom-hostile purposes and keep about 99% of their code secret from us, so the fight for software freedom must go on



  23. Corporate Media Blames 'China' and 'Open Source' for Back Doors in Microsoft's Intentionally Flawed Proprietary Software That's Causing Chaos

    'Red Scare' tactics are being used to divert attention away from Microsoft's incompetence and conspiracy with the NSA (to put back doors in everything, essentially making all software inherently vulnerable, by design)



  24. Microsoft Has Infiltrated Authorities and/or Their Consultation Processes

    In the European Union, the United States and just about everywhere else in the world one can find Microsoft officials replacing public officials, as if the decision-making too has been outsourced to the "Good Folks" from Microsoft



  25. Links 1/7/2020: Tails 4.8, Serpent OS

    Links for the day



  26. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, June 30, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, June 30, 2020



  27. EPO Management Celebrates the Lowering of Patent Quality While Granting Invalid Patents (IPs) Instead of European Patents (EPs)

    Europe's most autocratic institution continues to cheat and lie to everybody; even twice in one day, together with... the Communist Party of China (through CNIPA)



  28. Links 30/6/2020: OpenSUSE Leap 15.2, 4MLinux 34.0 Beta and IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 146

    Links for the day



  29. [Humour] There's Always a Way... (to Grant Patents on Almost Anything)

    The referral from European Patent Office (EPO) President António Campinos leaves the door open to patents on life, provided one paints those as uniquely clever, e.g. GMO (same tricks for software patents in Europe with “Hey Hi” — an overblown buzz wave)



  30. Crocodiles Can Only Ever Fake Empathy

    Greenwashing, pinkwashing, openwashing and abduction of various authentic civil rights movements (centered around gender, race, and sometimes economic issues) is very easy and cheap relative to the depths of corporate pockets; the problem is, those things help distract the 'masses' from objectively immoral and universally unacceptable acts


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