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

10.29.18

USPTO Under Iancu: Making Patents Low Quality (Again)

Posted in America, Patents at 2:14 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

What they mean by “great” is the number (quantity), not the quality

Make Patents Great Again

Summary: Patents of questionable legitimacy are being granted, passed around, and used for litigation; the net effect may be financially beneficial to the lawsuits ‘industry’, but taxpayers and science suffer the most

THE USPTO has descended or deteriorated into “law firm” mentality. The goal is money and the Director comes from a firm that judges its “success” by number of lawsuits, patents etc. Why was such leadership appointment by Trump? Maybe past business relations, maybe something even more nefarious than this.

To demonstrate the psyche of the people who now “run the asylum” (to use a crude metaphor), consider this new post which shows how patent law firms view everything. “In order to increase utilization of patents,” it says. Like what, lawsuits? They love patent wars, they provoke fights and lawsuits. It’s how they make a living. To quote a broader context:

In order to increase utilization of patents, there seems to be a need for development of such new applications. Actually, Xinova has issued the Request for Application (RFA) to identify new applications for an existing technology of its customer in November 2017. I’m wondering if universities may also need such an service to explore possible applications for their technology seeds. Anyway, it would be necessary to study how to valuate such ideas of new applications and how to reward the inventors, especially when working with outside persons.

They don’t care about inventors, let alone rewarding anyone but themselves (with legal bills).

A Republican pundit has meanwhile written for Watchtroll about Federal, i.e. taxpayers-funded, work being passed to patent trolls owing to the Bayh-Dole lunacy. Yes, only a few days ago Watchtroll promoted more of this lunacy, merely a few days after we had explained why this is morally wrong. “Much of the research and development done by NASA has broader applications than space and have been used in many everyday commercial products,” Above the Law summarised. This is an example where taxpayers’ money was invested in patenting decent ideas that the general public can use to make life better. Bayh-Dole, however, turned over such patents to trolls. The trolls sue taxpayers using patents acquired at the expense of those taxpayers. Speaking of taxes, there’s a new article titled “New 2019 French Patent/Software box regime” by Bird & Bird (Brent Springael, Laurence Clot and Coralie Crespin). Bird & Bird of Team UPC infamy (the patent trolls’ proponents) are now advocating tax evasion using patenting/accounting tricks. Isn’t that lovely?

But even worse issues persist at the moment. As always, we’re primarily focused on patent scope. According to Donald Zuhn, a proponent of patents on life, the USPTO has changed its Web site (perhaps to help distract from over a week of systems' downtime; that would be a neat spin/diversion attempt) and it has “extended [...] limited amount of non-production time — three hours for utility and reissue applications — to consider responses filed following a final rejection.”

Here are the key parts:

In a Patent Alert e-mail distributed earlier this month, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that the After-Final Consideration Pilot 2.0 (AFCP 2.0) program has been extended to September 30, 2019.

The AFCP, which was implemented in April 2012 (see “USPTO to Assess After Final Consideration Pilot Program”), modified in May 2013 (see “USPTO News Briefs”), and extended since then provides examiners with a limited amount of non-production time — three hours for utility and reissue applications — to consider responses filed following a final rejection.

To be fair, this didn’t start with Iancu, but one has to wonder about the impact on patent quality. Over the past week we’ve seen some questionable Google patents and the Office has apparently just granted fake (bogus) software patents to Skillz. “Skillz,” they speaks of themselves, “the worldwide leader in mobile eSports, announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued the company two new patents. The company now has exclusive rights to a total of 13 eSports-related patents.”

They say that the “latest patent from Skillz, however, is the first to provide such a feature for mobile games” and they allude to something which is software, abstract. In a rather pragmatic sense, software patents no longer have validity. Here is another example of such patents. How about this new one? It sounds like GrowPath received bogus/fake software patents from the Office (not before Alice/Section 101/AIA as it seems a lot newer, post-ten million). To quote:

GrowPath, a software firm born out of the privacy-obsessed legal industry, has developed and now patented a personalized solution that utilizes an owner’s personal photos as the second step in a two-factor authentication process on mobile devices.

[...]

The new patent (#10,097,538) is the third for GrowPath. The company’s other patents focus on data obfuscation (cyber) and a logic tool which facilitates, among other things, the ability to easily customize algorithms without advanced science or mathematics training.

The new patent also means more tattoos for inventor Sanchez. A former Marine, Growpath’s chief product officer notches all of his patent numbers on his right forearm. With the latest addition, his count is now three. “Software is a crowded field, but the one sure way to distinguish yourself and your business is to truly innovate,” Sanchez explains. “I can’t think of a more personal way to show my pride in that innovation than to wear the patents on my body.”
Images capturing Sanchez’s ever-expanding roster of patent tattoos are here and the video is here.

They actually tattoo patent numbers, embedding them deep insode their skin. There are photos there, too. How much more insane can it get?

We’ve also noticed this press release [1, 2] that speaks of “[t]he first patent entitled “System and Method for Consolidating Account Data” Canadian Patent No. 2821002 recognized the Canadian patent protection for Qvinci’s original invention as improved. The second Canadian patent entitled “Methods and Apparatus for Providing Data Normalization, Scalability and Maintainability” Canadian Patent No. 2829665 recognized Canadian patent protection for Qvinci’s normalizer application.”

This isn’t a US patent; it’s in Canada. Nevertheless, one must bear in mind that the Canadian patent office usually follows the US.

As we noted here before, the USPTO keeps granting abstract software patents provided people surf hype waves like blockchain (yes, it’s software patents — all of them). Here is a brand-new example: “Nasdaq, the $10 trillion dollar stock exchange, has patented a blockchain newswire service. Filed in January 2017, the patent is titled “Systems and methods for securing and disseminating time-sensitive information using a blockchain.” The patent was released to the public earlier this week.”

Nasdaq is already involved in some court battles with software patents. PTAB might invalidate these. If not PTAB, then maybe the higher court/s. Such litigation activity helps nobody but law firms and days ago we learned that Immervision is suing LG. They issued a press release about it and it certainly seems as though AP had been reduced to pay-to-say of patent trolls or opportunistic parasites when they sue real companies.

Ultimately, a lot of resources go into unproductive activities. The Office doesn’t seem to care.

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. Social Control Media is About Social Control and If It Doesn't Ban You It'll Shut Down Everyone's Account (One Day)

    It’s time to leave the ‘Internet rot’ which is social control media well behind us; blogging and RSS/XML may seem like a thing of the past, but they may as well become the future (again; if we make the correct and informed choices)



  2. Microsoft's Fingers in Every Pie: The Cult Mentality That Society Needs to Become Wary of

    Microsoft and its co-founder (pretending to do his for-profit 'charity' via the Gates Foundation) are trying to control the world; in the process they've moved to control even their most potent competitor, according to Gates himself, which is GNU/Linux



  3. Links 9/7/2020: Google’s Open Usage Commons, GNOME 3.36.4, Neptune 6.5

    Links for the day



  4. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, July 08, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, July 08, 2020



  5. Links 8/7/2020: SUSE to Acquire Rancher Labs, Btrfs as Default in Fedora, Qt Creator 4.12.4

    Links for the day



  6. Yes, Master

    When the Linux Foundation tells us to tone down our language we ought to remember what kind of hypocritical stance these people have (note: the above have nothing to do with slavery, either)



  7. Fraunhofer is Again Evergreening Software Patents to Maintain Its Codecs Cartel, Forcing Everyone to Pay to View/Stream Multimedia Files

    The roller-coaster of software patents on multimedia isn't stopping; we know the culprits who can be named for perpetuating this injustice



  8. [Humour/Meme] Focusing on the Bombings and Who's Included in the Bombings

    Supremacist agenda disguised as "tolerant and inclusive" is still objectionable supremacist agenda



  9. Manners Are a Good Thing. The Yardstick or the Standard of Manners Changes Over Time.

    Entirely legitimate grievances of African-Americans are being exploited by people who aren’t even African-American (and usually don’t speak for African-Americans) to warp the debate from one about software ethics and technical issues, not to mention war crimes of companies that employ many programmers, to something which is unlikely to really help African-Americans (also, they don't employ any African-Americans)



  10. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, July 07, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, July 07, 2020



  11. Links 8/7/2020: Huawei’s GNU/Linux PC, Sparky 5.12, and Endless OS 3.8.4 Released

    Links for the day



  12. [Humour] Television Channels That Don't Speak of Real Looting But Participate in Looting

    People may need to look beyond (or outside) the television screen to grasp what's going on



  13. (Software) Freedom is Elusive Without the Ability to Concentrate

    Software is consuming people's minds; to make matters worse, people have become so attached to such software that they're unable to see it and get away from it (they associate that software with "social life")



  14. Monopolies Erode Freedom, Freedom Erodes Monopolies

    "There are so many reasons that GitHub makes projects less free."



  15. Links 7/7/2020: NomadBSD 1.3.2, Clonezilla Live 2.6.7 and DRM Comes to Cars

    Links for the day



  16. [Humour] IAM Ranked Top for Quality of EPO Propaganda

    Contrary to what the European Patent Office (EPO) keeps saying, patent quality is slipping very fast in Europe (based on the EPO's own analysis!) but patent trolls-funded publishers deny that



  17. When They're Done With Patents on Foods and Recipes They'll Have Patents on Fashion, Taste and Smell

    The mental dysfunction — an infectious condition — that says everything in the world must be patented should be resisted; it overlooks the fact that patents were introduced to protect/promote actual invention, not thoughts, feelings, nature and art



  18. [Humour/Meme] IBM's Money is Unhealthy to the Free Software Foundation (FSF)

    IBM will never be happy as long as RMS (Richard Stallman) has a say in the FSF — directly or indirectly — or even in the GNU Project, both of which he himself created back when IBM was the biggest monopolist



  19. IRC Proceedings: Monday, July 06, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, July 06, 2020



  20. Never Let IBM/Red Hat Lecture Us on Morality

    Ethics and morality should not be taught by those who themselves need a lesson; in the meantime we're losing the courage to speak freely and those who commit atrocious acts like it a lot better that way



  21. [Humour/Meme] Wear the Red Hat as the Open Org Becomes Openwash

    IBM is changing Red Hat and not for the better; sooner or later IBM will become another Microsoft and changing from one to the other will be like swapping 'masters'



  22. IBM is Imposing Non-Free, Privacy-Infringing Tools and Patent Tolls on Red Hat Staff

    There are signs that Red Hat under IBM will be more like assimilation to IBM, not IBM assimilating to the 'Red Hat way' or the so-called 'open org'



  23. They Tell the Free Software Community That It is Racist While Saying Nothing at All About Trump's Racism (Because He Gives Them Government and Military Contracts)

    While their president compares 'foreign' people to a virus (using innuendo, dog whistles and racist rhetoric reminiscent of the Nazi era) the big US corporations (American surveillance giants) turn their attention to rather innocuous words inside people's code (which almost nobody sees anyway)



  24. LibreOffice 'Personal Edition' Seems Like a Marketing and Communication Fluke

    Had LibreOffice developers (and the Document Foundation) communicated these changes more openly, they would have averted/avoided some of the FUD



  25. It Almost Feels Like Microsoft Has Already 'Bought' Canonical

    Canonical's disturbing trajectory and betrayal of the community continue unabated; one can easily get the impression that Ubuntu exists to help Microsoft at some level



  26. Update to GNU Project Bleeding into Microsoft

    Update



  27. Microsoft is Going to Get Tired of Whining About “GAFA” and Accept That It's Just as Bad If Not a Lot Worse at Privacy

    Microsoft is being treated by the US government as if it's not abusing anything, let alone people's privacy; if anything, this demonstrates the degree to which Microsoft infiltrated or 'vendor-captured' regulatory branches



  28. Links 6/7/2020: LibreOffice 7.0 RC1, MX-19.2 KDE Beta 1, Linux 5.8 RC4

    Links for the day



  29. ZDNet's 'Linux' Section: Linux is Full of Problems and It Loves/Embraces Software Patents

    Software patents promotion and GNU/Linux FUD; your daily dosage of 'news' from the tabloid known as ZDNet...



  30. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, July 05, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, July 05, 2020


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