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October 14, 2008


Of the text --neither the Senator's website nor his 83-page "Blueprint for Change" (available at his website) make any mention of such [gold-plated] patents.-- please note that the Obama site obama.3cdn.net DOES make mention of "gold-plated" patents. This and some other matters are discussed in the post at Intellectual Property Today on 26 Sept 08 titled On Aspects of Barack Obama’s Technology Policy available at
http://www.iptoday.com/news-article.asp?id=2976&type=ip. A version will appear in the Nov. 2008 issue of Intellectual Property Today.

As an Obama supporter, I am disappointed to see that he is consulting with Professors Rai and Lemley, because I strongly disagree with previous statements they have made about the patent system and the PTO. On the other hand, Professor Rai's comments above sound much more reasonable and less anti-applicant than the points made in the amicus brief she recently submitted along with Professor Lemley in Tafas v. Dudas. This might suggest that academics feel pressure to write articles or submit briefs that are more controversial than their actual views in order to attract attention, or it might suggest that Professor Rai was self-censoring when speaking in a public forum (or perhaps it suggests neither of these things), but in any event I am hopeful that Senator Obama's advisors are capable of giving him objective advice. I also like Professor Lessig's suggestion about subject matter limitations, since that might resolve the current disagreement between biotech/pharma and the computer industries, but it seems like the kind of thing that might be hard to design and implement since there might be significant incentives for having subject matter fit into certain categories.

FYI. The Toledo Intellecual Property Law Association is showing a recording of the panel discussion that took place in Denver on August 28th, at the University of Toledo, School of Law auditorium tomorrow at noon. The event is open to the public. See: http://toledopatentlaw.wordpress.com/2008/10/13/intellectual-property-policy-and-the-presidential-campaign/

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