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May 11, 2008


"...the more productive approach would be to accept the IPO's invitations...to join with the Office in an attempt to solve these problems...."

I couldn't agree more. The PTO seems to chart its own course, without ever seeking input from the patent bar or other interested parties. There would be plenty of simple ways to increase examination efficiency (e.g., allowing multiply dependent claims; having the applicant designate a representative claim or two for preliminary examination), and plenty of ways to introduce minor statutory tweaks with potentially great results (e.g., delayed examination).

However, the PTO never bothers to ask for input, except after they've proposed some rules and opened up the commenting period (which comments they ignore anyway).

Last week I received the following notice from the AIPLA:

"The AIPLA Spring Meeting in Houston had scheduled Under Secretary of Commerce and PTO Director Jon W. Dudas to be the speaker at the May 14, 2008, luncheon. Director Dudas has just informed us that it will be necessary for him to attend the upcoming WIPO Coordination Committee meeting which will take up nominations for the post of WIPO Director General."

Sure. A WIPO committee meeting that was probably scheduled well before Mr. Dudas agreed to speak to the AIPLA. That *must* be the reason he opted out of luncheon gig. I mean, it couldn't possibly be because he suddenly realized that most of the AIPLA membership is less than sympathetic toward his buffoonery...

Maybe it's just his survival instinct kicking in - since he'll be out of a job in January, he may be submitting his cv to WIPO for its consideration.

I wish him the best of luck in obtaining that job...the sooner, the better.

"The IPO's letter also reminds the Director what the other side of the Patent Office's mouth has been saying for several months: that the reduction in the allowance rate was not because patent quality has declined, but because patent examination quality has increased"

Apparently you don't understand what this means. This means that since quality of examination went up, crppier apps are not being allowed, where they were being allowed before. Thus, higher quality patents issuing being due to higher quality examination does not have any effect on the fact that the submissions are suking. They are merely indicative of it. Learn to use reason on your blog and maybe Doll will start liking it more.

Dear e6k:

The timing doesn't match the rhetoric, you see. First, the trend of falling allowance rates have been over the past year or so. If the Office was reducing allowance rates merely for bad applications, you would expect that applicants would be filing fewer bad applications. But Director Dudas has been speaking (or at least leaving the impression) that applicants are filing more and more poor quality patents now, which seems illogical.

Second, the applications you are examining now (by Office statistics) should be applications that were prepared and filed before the fall in allowance rates. If you are correct and there has been an improvement in the standards of examination, then a graph of the allowance rate and the quality of applications should start to parallel, with a lag time for applicants to realize they have to improve application quality.

Since you are in a better position to know than I am, why don't you give me a representative dozen or so patents that have been granted during the 72% allowance rate days that you think would not be granted now (in the 44% allowance rate days). You can even include cases with KSR implications (although that represents a change in the law). If you go back to the blog in November, we asked our readers to send us the "bad" patents they knew about, and were a little underwhelmed not with the response but with the types of "bad" patents we got in return. It would be good to have someone with you expertise weigh in on the issue.

And, as we discussed before, ad hominem doesn't really work on our site. We can have differences of opinions without it, and it does little to advance the discussion.

Thanks for the comment.

The comments to this entry are closed.

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