Posts Tagged: "interviews"

Up close and personal with Russ Slifer

In this final segment we begin talking about something Slifer wanted specifically to address — Tony Scardino being named Acting Deputy Director. We then proceed to some of fun, “get to know you” questions that range from sports, to movies, to music, to what, if any advice Slifer would give himself if he could be transported back in time to meet himself as he was embarking upon a career in the law.

An Exclusive Interview with former USPTO Deputy Director Russ Slifer

As you will see from the transcript, nothing was out of bounds, although because of time we didn’t get into everything. Slifer did agree to come back for more in the coming months, specifically relating to a discussion about patent eligibility, and we will be following up on this specific ideas relating to inter partes review (which you will hear him mention in Part 1 of the interview and which we return to in Part 2). We did discuss the turmoil at the end of the Obama Administration and the fact that he did resign, as requested, effective January 20, 2017. We also discussed the mechanics of resignation, getting things done on a government timetable, how being Deputy Director was an extremely rewarding job, his view that a fee increase is absolutely essential and that Tony Scardino makes an excellent Acting Deputy Director. In the final segment, which will be part 3, we also spend some time getting to know Russ a little more, talking about movies, sports, music and more.

An Examiner’s Tips For Speedier Patent Prosecution

Interactions between patent examiners and patent practitioners are often tense. At worst, these interactions can be an exercise in restraint with both parties thinly veiling their disdain for one another. This adversarial approach can stall prosecution and run adverse to the practitioner’s purpose – i.e., to obtain the best patent claim scope possible for his or her client. Patent practitioners thus could benefit in many instances by having a better understanding of an examiner’s expectations and approaching prosecution with a mind toward working with the examiner instead of against the examiner. A conversation with an Examiner in a mechanical art unit provided the following tips for how practitioners may expedite the examination process by working (to the extent possible) within the examiner’s expectations.

Does the Patent Gender Gap Matter?

Why should we care about getting more women inventing? What does it matter? You don’t find more innovation by looking in places where you’re not likely to discover it. You’ll find innovation by researching and developing and we have several untapped sources of potential. Up until now there has been little or no real significant output on an entrepreneurial innovative level for female inventors, as well as with minority inventors. So I’m very interested in the types of programs that are going on at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and I’m very interested in the efforts to try and bring women into the entrepreneurial and innovative space because I think that’s where we can find creative, fresh ideas. So I think this is a very important initiative.

The Patent Gender Gap Goes Beyond Fewer Women in Math and Sciences

“[W]e are finding that when the schools that are starting to measure their invention disclosure and their patent filings, again with at least one woman represented, even when they control for the percentage of female faculty members within a given department, for instance, they’re still finding that yes, there are fewer women represented but those fewer women that are represented are not filing as many invention disclosures as their male counterparts. So while we do need to concentrate on changing the culture and on making sure that girls and women are encouraged within these fields, we also have to, I think, for the sake of our economy, concentrate on women who are in these fields and are working and make sure that they also know about the patent process and find that accessible to them.”

How to Protect Intellectual Property in the Interviewing Process

During the recruiting process and job interviews, open dialogues and an exchange of ideas take place between the job applicant and the company. However, when intellectual property is involved, both employers and applicants must walk a fine line between building trust versus over-disclosure. Here are some guidelines every prospective employee and employer should know about intellectual property and the interviewing process.

More Applicants Should Use the First Action Interview Program

The First Action interview (FAI) program affords applicants a no-fee opportunity to speak with examiners early during prosecution, before the examiner has invested the time to prepare a complete Office Action. Yet, a free FAI request is filed in a mere 1 of 625 applications. Our analysis shows that the prosecution benefits of this program continue to be realized and that the program improves both the efficacy (allowance rate) and efficiency (office-action counts and time to issuance) of prosecution. We have seen, both in our professional experiences and through these statistics, such great benefit of this program that we have encouraged the USPTO to take this program one step further and establish a Pre-Search Interview Program that would allow the applicant to explain and potentially demonstrate an invention even prior to the examiner conducting a search.

Tech Transfer 101: It’s A Better World with University Technology

AUTM collects quantitative data and facts about the benefits of university tech transfer, but the qualitative evidence is actually the most important. With the Better World Report, which just hit 500 stories, AUTM provides evidence that university tech transfer makes a better world. Just look at those stories in the Better World Report; they’re heartwarming. It is amazing that some of the critics tend to overlook or completely discount the very real stories of success. I don’t know what the critics are after— I guess the success of university tech transfer doesn’t fit the narrative that they wish to impose on everybody.

Talking Trademarks: An Exclusive Interview with INTA’s Debbie Cohn

What follows is our wide ranging discussion, which start out with what Cohn is doing with INTA and then moves into an in depth discussion of issues surrounding counterfeiting, the newly formed Trademark Caucus in Congress, and the recent Federal Circuit decision on disparaging trademark registrations in the so-called Slants case. We ended with the familiar fun questions that give us an opportunity to get to know Cohn.

Getting to Know Tech Geek and Tchaikovsky Fan, Michelle Lee

That leaves the fun questions, which really give us an opportunity to get to know Director Lee, the type of music she listens to, the movies she watches, what she reads and what she enjoys doing in her spare time. We pick up our conversation talking about her recent trip to the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and what captured the imagination of her inner tech geek.

An Exclusive Interview with USPTO Director Michelle Lee

There were no topics ruled out of bounds for this 30 minute interview, not even the Supreme Court’s recent decision to accept cert. in Cuozzo, although as an attorney myself I know better than to ask questions that would have certainly provoked a polite “no comment” response in the face of ongoing litigation. Nevertheless, our conversation was wide ranging. We discussed the release of the Copyright White paper, which among other things recommends expanding eligibility for statutory damages in copyright infringement actions. We also discussed Lee’s recent visit to the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the power outage that brought down USPTO electronic filing systems, the Office’s patent quality initiative, the new patent classification system, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and more.

Patents, a system that works – On the record with Bruce Kisliuk

Bruce Kisliuk: “I think over time that pendulum will swing back. I think the nature of the business is that it’s likely going to come by successive case law decisions, I think we’re going slowly see things come back. I think clarity on where the line is on eligibility will get firmer, and I think there will be a stronger appreciation of patent value. It might take some time, maybe by an example — and I hate to think this –because I don’t necessarily want something like this to happen, but government often reacts to disasters. They don’t necessarily see the subtleties. They wait until there’s a disaster and then they react to the disaster and I’d rather not see a true crisis, I’d rather see some course-correction.”

IV founder Edward Jung says US is losing its competitive edge in funding innovative startups

EDWARD JUNG: ”At the other end of that value chain you now have some of the most valuable companies in the entire world in places like China. What stops them from taking all of the value they’ve been able to derive from their over one billion population base, which well capitalizes them, and coming in and competing in the US? The US has not seen so many threats to their industry come from outside the US as opposed to within the US so in that sense I think that’s a whole new set of interesting problems to think about. I’ve actually had encounters with Chinese companies asking if there was some kind of, you know, hidden trick in the way we appear to be opening our market for them to freely come in without any IP barriers. For example, in pairing software and IP and so on and so forth.”

On the Record with IAM’s Richard Lloyd

I think it’s interesting to see how people present this as a bipartisan issue but that covers up the fact that actually there are some very clear splits within the parties themselves. A number of the conservative think tanks and interest groups have come out and come out very strongly against broad-based patent reform. But, if you look at some of the Republicans in the House and Senate who support legislation they have not really addressed that property right piece and have focused more on litigation reform and things like fee shifting which they feel need to be part of any strong reform package. So the politics is quite split and is actually quite nuanced which I’m not sure people always appreciate.

Sharon Israel, AIPLA prepare for Annual Meeting of IP Practitioners

“It has met and exceeded my expectations,” Sharon Israel told me during a recent interview to discuss her term as AIPLA President, which concludes at the end of the AIPLA Annual Meeting next week. “I thought I had a good idea of what my year would be like, but it went beyond what even I expected. There is a lot to be said for what AIPLA does in terms of advocacy, education, member services and global outreach – it is a wonderful organization.”