USPTO Director-Nominee Lee Calls For ‘Responsible Stewardship’ Of Patent System

USPTO logo

In perhaps her first big speech since being nominated by President Obama to head the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Michelle Lee today told an industry meeting today to use the patent system responsibly and with balance. The agency is embarking on a new global effort to streamline processes and improve quality. And for the first time in a long time, she said, USPTO has the financial resources to do it.

Little-Known Case May Dramatically Change US Patent System

800px-Supreme_Court

The patent case recently argued before the US Supreme Court is relatively unknown, and for good reason. It involves no exciting new technology. It has no controversial patent claims (e.g., covering human genes). However, Teva Pharms. USA v. Sandoz, Inc. could produce major changes in America’s patent system.

Review of “Digital Depression: Information Technology And Economic Crisis”

DigiGes_PRISM_Yes_we_scan_-_Demo_am_Checkpoint_Charlie_June_2013

Information and communication technologies (ICTs), and in particular the internet, have revolutionized and disrupted all aspects of human activity, and even behaviour. This has resulted in many academic publications and much discussion, including in intergovernmental bodies, regarding various issues, including how best to govern the internet.

Dan Schiller’s book helps us to understand the background of these events, which have affected economic and political power relations, and how US policies have consistently favoured capital over labour, and have resulted in transfers of vast sums from developing countries to developed countries, writes Richard Hill.

USTR’s Investigations On IP Rights Against India: Is There A Tenable Case?

Indian flag

On 14 October, the US Trade Representative (USTR) began the out-of-cycle review (OCR) of India’s intellectual property (IP) laws, the mandate which it gave itself in the 2014 Special 301 Report. Like several years in the past, the USTR once again included India in the Priority Watch List, but this time, India’s IP laws are being subjected to the additional scrutiny through an OCR. It is to be seen whether the OCR sets the stage for naming India as a Priority Foreign Country, viewed by the USTR as worst offender of intellectual property rights, in the next Special 301 report. USTR’s inclusion of India for the OCR was a reflection of the influence that the domestic lobbies have on the country’s engagement with its partner countries, and about USTR’s consistency with World Trade Organization rules, writes Biswajit Dhar.

The TPP’s New Plant-Related Intellectual Property Provisions

Public Citizen logo 2

The newly-released Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) intellectual property (IP) chapter would help seed conglomerates like Monsanto prevent farmers from saving and using seeds that contain patented plant materials, even when such use is for their own personal consumption. The TPP language would also prevent breeders from using plants seeds that contain patented plant materials to research and develop new varieties. Most plant variety protection (PVP) systems allow farmers to save and reuse seeds (for noncommercial purposes) and permit breeders to use protected plant varieties to research and develop new varieties. In contrast, patents on plant-related inventions, as outlined in the TPP, may have few exceptions. This new text constitutes a huge step in the wrong direction, changing the plant IP regimes of many of the negotiating countries to the detriment of their populations, writes Public Citizen.

Leaked TPP Draft Reveals Extreme Rights Holder Position Of US, Japan, Outraged Observers Say

Wikileaks logo

Critics poring over a newly leaked alleged draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP) intellectual property chapter say it shows the United States is taking an all-out lurch toward greater protection and less access, causing outrage among public interest groups.

USTR Sets Deadline For Comments On Review Of Indian Protection Of US IP

India-US 2969PR Flags Oct 2014

Comments must be submitted in the new two to three weeks for an extraordinary review by the United States government of India’s protection of US intellectual property rights.

Tech Industry Report Ranks Countries On Protectionism – Including IPR

Trade - Flickr - Corey Seeman

A report released today by an American technology industry group ranks countries on the basis of mercantilist policies, urging the United States and multilateral organisations to issue a “bold response” to these restrictive and anti-competitive practices – including intellectual property theft and compulsory licensing permitted under WTO rules in developing countries. The top targets? China and India.

Domain Dispute Seems To Show Plight Of The ‘Little Guy’ In A Corporate System

marlboro man

A recent cybersquatting case processed under the World Intellectual Property Organization internet domain dispute procedures offers a possible glimpse of the plight of ordinary internet users in a global system dominated by large companies and their legal teams.

US Cracking Down On Software Patents

red power button icon

The US courts are aggressively applying the ruling. So is the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Thanks to their common interpretation of the US Supreme Court’s recent decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank, it is now open season on software patents.