It is with a very heavy heart that I write this article.
At precisely 10:00 pm on Tuesday, July 30, 2013, Renee’s father and my father-in-law, Richard Compasso, passed. He went into the hospital for surgery on his neck a week earlier, needing to relieve discs and bone spurs that were pressing on his spine. After that surgery he was doing fine, was up and walking, and was to be discharged from the hospital on Thursday, July 25, 2013. Unfortunately, at approximately 3:03 am on Thursday, July 25, 2013, during a routine bed check by hospital staff, he was found not breathing. He was resuscitated, slipped into a coma and never regained consciousness. Repeated scans and tests showed that only the most primitive brain functions remained. He would never be himself again.
As per the wishes in his living will, Rich as he was known to his friends and Poppy to his children, grandchildren and loved ones, was removed from life support on Monday, July 29, 2013. He was kept comfortable until his passing to make sure he was suffering no pain. His children all by his side when he took his final breathe. He will be laid to rest today with a military ceremony in Yonkers, New York.
I write this article to honor Pop, as I took to calling him in recent years. I would like everyone to know about the good man that I knew and how he will be missed.
In December of 2012 Article one Partners (AOP) announced that they would be launching a new program geared towards military veterans. As someone from a family of many military veterans, I hold the utmost respect for anyone who has served in the United States Armed forces. We have been following the program and were thrilled to learn that the program was a success when they announced that Iraq war veteran Jason Maples of Mountain View CA, was the overall Winner of the Article One Partner’s Veteran Program.
Mr. Maples, who was part of the original invasion into Iraq in 2003, was one of more than 20 other veterans, ranging in age from 17 to 54, who participated in the study. Not only did he receive $2,500 for his success in the research projects that AOP calls “Studies”, but he will also be receiving an additional $5,000 for his exemplary performance overall.
The Studies, which were meant to provide participating veterans with hands-on experience in patent research I can proudly say has been a great success. In fact you may have already read my interview with Jason So in continuing coverage of the program, I had the distinct pleasure to speak with the CEO and Founder of AOP, Cheryl Milone about her views on the success of the program.
In December of 2012 Article One Partners announced that they would be launching an educational contest series geared towards military veterans with an interest in research, science and technology. The program, known as the Article One Partners Veterans Program or AOP-Vets for short will consist of three main pillars; an educational curriculum on patent research, a series of career guidance sessions from intellectual property executives, and an “exciting Grand Challenge” with the opportunity to win rewards for success on the research platform. In fact, at the end of the program, which is set to begin on April 8, 2013 and will run through May 17, of 2013, the best-performing participant of the program will receive a $5,000 reward.
Given that I come from a family of military men, and came so close to signing up for the military myself, I hold the topic of veterans near and dear to my heart. In fact when I heard about this program I was thrilled because I know that many veterans have been affected by this recession are out of work themselves. I know a few veterans in particular who could benefit from a program such as this and feel that programs like this are the very least we should give veterans in return for the sacrifices they and their families make for our country. But the best part about this program is that it affords veterans who wish to participate the opportunity to become trained in the area of intellectual property that should ultimately lead to additional career opportunities that otherwise they would not have qualified for.
It was another busy year at IPWatchdog.com, and I want to thank all of our readers and guest contributors for making this year very special.
Although we have not been officially notified by the ABA, the vote totals are now viewable on the ABA Journal Blawg 100 page and it seems that we have been voted the top IP law blog for 2012! We have now been honored as one of the top 100 legal blogs by the American Bar Association for four years in a row, and the top IP law blog in 2010 and again in 2012.
In terms of website traffic, during 2012 we had our best year ever. For 2012 we averaged 82,632 unique visitors per month (compared with an average of about 71,000 for 2011). We also finished 2012 with our top three monthly totals for unique visitors, with 90,656 in October 2012, 89,541 in November 2012 and 87,583 in December 2012.
Over recent years, online advertising has been a driving force in the growth of the Internet. As business owners, you never stop hearing about the benefits of having your own website and advertising your services on-line. I am guilty of preaching this sermon myself! However, because of the ever-increasing existence of badware, it has become increasingly difficult to know what ads or websites we can trust. Thankfully, tech giants such as Google, Twitter, Facebook, PayPal and others have joined forces with StopBadware.org and formed the Ads Integrity Alliance (AIA) in order to combat Badware, protect users from bad ads and maintain the integrity of the “online advertising ecosystem.”
StopBadware.org is a non-profit organization that is focused solely on protecting the public from badware websites. The organization started out as a project of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University but has grown significantly to include partners such as Google, Mozilla, Verizon, PayPal, Qualys, and VeriSign. The StopBadware Board of Directors consists of many of the biggest names within the Online industry such as Chief Information Security Officer at PayPal, Michael Barrett, (Currently the Chair of the Board), the Vice-President and Chief Internet evangelist for Google, Vinton, G. Cerf, Engineering Director for Google, Mike Shaver, Chairman and CEO of Qualys, Inc., Philippe Courtot to name a few.
Social Media is not a fad. It is not something that is going to go away nor is it going to be replaced by something bigger and better. Most businesses have embraced social media and all that it has to offer. Perhaps you, yourself have taken a ride on the social media bandwagon. But, even if you have a well-established social media presence, are you really getting the most out of your online relationships? Are you missing opportunities to truly leverage your business relationships online in order to reap bigger rewards and sales in the real world? Following are 5 easy ways that you can take to utilize your online business and real-world relationships to increase your overall social media ROI.
1. Give and Receive On-Line Introductions
Don’t just wait for others to approach you through social media. Until you have established your online brand, telling others who you are, what you do and what you have to offer, you cannot expect others to find you. You are always your own best advertiser. You need to reach out to everyone you know and want to know to get the word out. With social media, as well as in the real world, you do not necessarily have to approach people blindly. Rather start utilizing the business relationships you have developed both off line and on over the years to meet those you would potentially like to work with.
As you most likely already know, Google has made it a tradition to create fun Google logo’s (or Doodles) to celebrate specific holidays, anniversaries and the lives of famous artists, pioneers and scientists. You may recall that on Saturday May 22, 2010, in celebration of Pacman’s 30th Anniversary, Google featured its very first interactive doodle in the form of a Pacman game you could actually play. You can read more about it in my article Pacman Celebrates its 30th Anniversary – Google Style. Yesterday Google featured another interactive doodle that they called the “Goog” this time in celebration of Dr. Robert Moog’s (rhymes with “vogue”) 78th birthday. Moog was an American pioneer of music who invented the electronic analog Moog Synthesizer. If you missed it, that’s OK, you can still play the fully interactive “Goog” Doodle through the Google Doodle Library.
Commerce Secretary John Bryson announces the release of the USPTO/ESA study on Intellectual Property and jobs at the White House.
Today I attended the an event on Intellectual Property and the US Economy which was held in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House grounds. The purpose of the event was to unveil a study — Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: Industries in Focus— prepared by the Economics and Statistics Administration and the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The study found that intellectual property intensive industries support at least 40 million jobs in the United States and contribute more than $5 trillion dollars to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). That is to say that 27.7% of all jobs in the U.S. were either directly or indirectly attributable to IP-intensive industries, and the amount contributed to the U.S. economy represents a staggering 34.8% of GDP.
“This first of its kind report shows that IP- intensive industries have a direct and significant impact on our nation’s economy and the creation of American jobs,” said Commerce Secretary John Bryson. “When Americans know that their ideas will be protected, they have greater incentive to pursue advances and technologies that help keep us competitive, and our businesses have the confidence they need to hire more workers. That is why this Administration’s efforts to protect intellectual property, and modernize the patent and trademark system are so crucial to a 21st century economy that is built to last.”
HAPPY INTERNATIONAL BE KIND TO LAWYERS DAY! (Previously known as National Be Kind To Lawyer’s Day!!) Have you not heard of it? Have you not read my article on this Special Celebration from years past? If your answer to these questions is NO, then you, my friend, are missing out (especially if you are a lawyer)!
So, what is this International Be Kind To Lawyers Day? I am so glad you asked! Steve Hughes, a non-lawyer from St. Louis, has been working with attorneys for many years now through his consulting firm Hit Your Stride, LLC. Whenever Steve merely mentions that he works with lawyers, he is more often than not met with snide comments, jokes and scowls. He hears things like, “Lawyers? I bet that’s a treat.” Or, “Lawyers? You poor thing.” So he asked himself, “Is it too much to ask to be nice to lawyers for just one day?” And in answer to his question, not to mention as a result of his playing defense counsel for an entire profession, the idea for National Be Kind To Lawyers Day was born.
On Sunday March 25 and Monday March 26, 2012, I attended the Second Annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) in Shreveport, LA. The event was hosted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office(USPTO) in Honor of Women’s History Month and was put together in collaboration with U.S. Senator Mary L. Landrieu(D-LA) and the city of Shreveport, Louisiana. WES was held at the Shreveport Convention Center and focused primarily on women entrepreneurs, innovation and the importance of intellectual property to business. I was honored to accept an invitation to present at this year’s event on social media and the importance of developing and leveraging online business relationships.
The program featured Senator Landrieu, who is chair of the Senate’s Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurshipas the symposium’s keynote speaker as well as the Mayor of Shreveport, Mayor Cedric B Glover who gave the welcoming remarks on day 1 of the event. The program additionally included the Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the USPTO Teresa (Terry) Stanek Rea, Director of Inventor Education, Outreach and Recognition (USPTO) Elizabeth Dougherty, Director of Research and Policy at the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) Julia Kurnik as well as successful entrepreneurs and other experts in the field of intellectual property law and small business.
Peggy Focarino, Commissioner for Patents, speaks to attendees at the March 1 event for Women Entrepreneurs on the campus of the USPTO in Alexandria, VA.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office is already in full swing with respect to its month long series of events to celebrate Women’s History Month and to honor the contributions of women entrepreneurs and innovators.
To kick of the month the USPTO held a Women Entrepreneurs event titled Celebrating the Past, Inventing the Future. On March 1, 2012, at the Madison Building on the Campus of the USPTO, the USPTO and the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) together paid tribute to women whose ingenuity and inventions have improved lives. The event highlighted the passage of the America Invents Act and one provision specifically that allows the USPTO to begin tracking the gender of patent applicants.
At the March 1 event at the USPTO, attendees heard from Deputy USPTO Director Teresa Stanek Rae, Commissioner for Patents Peggy Focarino, Commissioner for Trademarks Debbie Cohn, Chairwoman of the National Women’s Business Council Donna James and others. The Chief of Staff to the First Lady Michelle Obama (Tina Tchen) was also in attendance and spoke along with Joyce Ward, USPTO Education Coordinator, about the next generation of women innovators.
Recently we received a press release announcing that six prominent patent and litigation attorneys had left the international law firm of Dorsey & Whitney LLP to join the growing Intellectual Property team at Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A. The addition of these six attorneys brings the total number of IP lawyers at Winthrop & Weinstineup to 30.
This got us thinking that maybe this move is part of what seems to be a continuing trend in the intellectual property industry. With so many large firms vanishing and small to medium size firms flourishing. So I sat down to talk with Scott Dongoske, president, and Deb Cochran, marketing director, of Winthrop & Weinstine for a conversation.
RENEE QUINN: I know that Dorsey & Whitney is one of the largest law firms in the United States. They have about 600 attorneys internationally. And I understand that currently your firm has 100 attorneys, 30 of which are under patent law. So by adding 6 more, you are basically quadrupling the size of your patent department. Why were you interested in growing that service area within your firm?