October 26, 2007
Beyond Black Thursday
Hal Wegner on the bigger picture:
The Continuation Rules are the current focus of attention absorbing the attention of the patent community - will "Black Thursday" actually transpire next week, November 1st, when the Continuation Rules are scheduled to take effect? Will there be a preliminary injunction to block implementation? What, ultimately, will the Federal Circuit say about all this?
But, this is a sideshow to the main event: If cloture is voted by the Senate on patent reform and ultimately patent reform includes the House-passed version on delegation of rulemaking authority, whatever happens in the near term on Continuation Rules will be superseded by the new law. Yet, the great bulk of the focus of the patent community is on the sideshow in Alexandria.
Cloture, Focus on the Main Event at the United States Senate: But, the main event is the suspense at the United States Senate where the vote on cloture for patent reform legislation hovers near the magic 60 vote mark:
If cloture is voted and patent reform does proceed, then the question relevant to the Continuation Rules is whether the House-backed version that de facto codifies the Continuation Rules will be included in any patent reform proposal. Even more extreme, the delegation of substantive rulemaking authority to the PTO that is central to this legislation will open the floodgates for creative regulatory legislation by the PTO that could make the Continuation Rules seem like the songbook for a church picnic.
"Patent Reform" may be Good - but It Should be Fixed, Pre-Cloture: While the patent bar is huddled at the Eastern District and its neighboring Carlyle complex-PTO focusing upon the Continuation Rules, the impetus for patent reform legislation across the Potomac slogs forward: It makes no sense to win the Continuation Rules battle while ignoring the fight to block substantive rulemaking authority that is a central feature of H.R. 1908.
Posted by Patent Hawk at October 26, 2007 1:53 PM | The Patent System
With all due respect, the IP community is fighting out on 3 fronts right now. In the rocket docket, at the GAO and in the Senate. A letter signed by over 300 companies and organizations was sent to the minority and majority members. This is cross industry. Key staffers have been made aware of the little fight on the Potomac, as well as the overwhelmingly negative impact of patent legislation by organizations organizing call ins to their senators. You can only do so much if the legislators have already been bought off on the patent legislation issue.
Posted by: Joyce at October 26, 2007 2:47 PM