Monday, September 19, 2011

Patent Law Reform

There is so much news about conflict and gridlock in Washington, and the impossibility of getting anything positive done, that most people probably don't even notice when an important piece of legislation gets passed on a bi-partisan basis. President Obama signed this landmark bill, called the America Invents Act, on Friday at Thomas Jefferson High School in Virginia. It is expected to produce efficiencies in the economy, spur job creation, reduce wasteful litigation, provide incentives for innovation, and speed up an important federal government bureaucracy. Stuff everybody wants. Maybe it's best that something as momentous as this legislation flies in under the radar, because if the public were to pay any attention to it, politicians would likely turn it into a partisan battleground.  If only we could pay as little attention to the legislative budget process as we do to the biggest change in patent law in over a hundred years, we'd probably get a bi-partisan budget bill passed in no time.

Here's a question and answer session at the White House explaining some of the law's provisions:

People who like to keep a tally of President Obama's accomplishments can add another one to the list, though to be fair, it is the product of an effort by many people over many years.

(another summary of the law's changes here)


  1. The Innovation Alliance was a major driver in support of this bill in Washington DC. Today's press release says the Innovation Alliance is pleased to see the willingness in Washington to work with “stakeholders of all stripes to craft this much-improved legislation.” Now, the goal is to help have the bill smoothly rolled out over the next year. The USPTO can be a great jobs engine. Well done to congress and the president.

  2. This bill won't do what it says. It will just help big international firms sustain their monopolies by taking and getting rid of their little business.