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Posts Tagged: "US Department of Commerce"

How to Effectively Derive Return On Investment (ROI) From US Federal Research Intellectual Capital

A massive amount of intellectual capital gets created every day from $150 billion in annual research funding allocated to federal laboratories and universities in the United States. Unfortunately, most of that intellectual capital never makes it to the market and does not generate any ROI. Essentially more than 99% of the intellectual capital created at universities and federal labs are never protected and never gets translated to intellectual property, and hence those are almost never transferred through a license to a startup or an existing company. So, what happens to the majority of the intellectual capital that is not disclosed as inventions? That typically remains locked up at the university without access from the outside world.

Commerce Secretary ready to push update to tech transfer laws to ensure greater commercialization

Secretary Ross gave an unequivocal endorsement of Bayh-Dole specifically, and more generally saying laws need to be updated to address business and technology realities of today, and to enable more companies to license federally funded technologies and take advantage of federally funded research in order to launch high-tech start-ups, create jobs, and grow the economy. “Our practices, policies, regulations, and laws all need to be updated to assure that technology transfer commercialization in the large-scale production and manufacture of innovative technologies occurs within the US,” Ross said. “We must address growing trade imbalances by producing in America the innovative products that the rest of the world needs to buy.”

Happy Birthday Patent System: Hope Springs Eternal

In 1790, the U.S. patent laws were first enacted and individuals could obtain a patent under the new federal government. For about a century beforehand, British citizens in the various parts of the American colonies could obtain patents for that region, and Britain and other European countries had patent laws as well. But the new American patent system was different: it was democratized in that anyone could participate, without the need for consent from the Crown. The origins of patent laws date back to the Fifteenth Century when Florentine regents sought to attract and keep innovators and their inventions. Elizabeth I was a keen ruler in passing various patent laws to encourage foreigners with ideas and inventions to relocate to Britain, as well as encourage domestic innovation.

Director Andrei Iancu’s Act One

Andrei Iancu is leaving an extremely lucrative position as Managing Partner at Irell to make his mark upon the patent system as Director for a salary that many in his wage bracket would consider a stipend. But his chance for significant policy impact is limited by time and the need to immediately deliver valid and timely patents on day one. Hopefully, Director Iancu is already planning some of his initiatives to get a jump start on his legacy.

The Story of Phyllis Schlafly’s Devotion to Patents and Inventors

Phyllis Schlafly was a true friend of and advocate for the American inventor. Mrs. Schlafly’s life-long admiration of inventors was deeply felt and well-founded. Her biographer reports Mrs. Schlafly regarded an inventor to be “the most glorious product of the free-enterprise system.” She had firsthand exposure to an inventor: her father, Bruce Stewart.

Provenance of U.S. patents in question as they continue to carry signature of Michelle Lee

Sources tell me that the USPTO was prepared last week to issue patents with the signature of Drew Hirshfeld, who is the Commissioner of Patents and seems to be current Acting Director, but at the last minute a decision was made to revert back to Michelle Lee’s signature. This creates several significant problems. First, if Lee is not currently the Director patents that are being issued with her signature are being issued in violation of §153. If we know anything about patent litigators it is that they raise every challenge possible, and it is only a matter of time before the provenance of patents issued during the Trump Administration are challenged as being invalid. I don’t suspect such an invalidity challenge will ultimately prevail, but how many patent owners are going to have to spend many tens of thousands of dollars to fight that challenge?

U.S. Commerce Department Announces Plan to Accelerate Transition to Private Management of the Domain Name System

The immediate practical consequences for domain-name registration while the transition proposal is developed are likely to be limited. Nevertheless, while the Department’s current DNS stewardship is not ending in the short term, the contemplated private-sector supervision arrangement is likely to tend to bolster the influence that non-U.S. entities have on domain-name policy questions in the long run. That may please foreign critics of the current system while raising possible concerns about foreign governmental interference in Internet-management issues.

Commerce Announces Change in Copyright Policy Comment Period

The meeting will now be held on December 12, 2013 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET at the USPTO headquarters in Alexandria, VA and the period for post-meeting comments has been extended. The deadline for filing pre-meeting comments is November 13, 2013.

Obama to Announce Restructuring of Department of Commerce

The Obama government restructuring plan is of particular importance within the patent community because it will affect the Commerce Department as well as five smaller agencies. As soon as I heard that my Spidey-senses started tingling. Wasn’t there something in the America Invents Act that applied only so long as the United States Patent and Trademark Office remained an agency within the Department of Commerce? Sure enough, there is. The new fee setting authority vested in the USPTO is contingent upon the Patent and Trademark Office remaining within the Department of Commerce.

A Manufacturing Strategy for 2012: Keeping Jobs & IP in the U.S.

At his speech at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Commerce Secretary Bryson outlined his top three priorities to help American businesses “build it here and sell it everywhere,” focusing on supporting advanced manufacturing, increasing our exports, and attracting more investment to America from all over the world. The key to emerging from the Great Recession is, of course, manufacturing. Manufacturing jobs have left the U.S. in favor of more business friendly climates in other countries, taking with them U.S. jobs and U.S. intellectual property. But moving into a Presidential election year will government be able to do anything that is at all likely to help?

USPTO Hosts Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium

On Friday March 11, 2011, I attended the Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium in honor of Women’s History Month at the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The program was co-sponsored by the US Women’s Chamber of Commerce and focused on women entrepreneurs, the importance of intellectual property protection for their innovations, how to leverage economic opportunities for women-owned businesses and what resources are available exclusively for women-owned small businesses. The topics discussed focused solely on American business.