Monday, July 28, 2014

AIA Trials Webinar 7/29/14

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board is hosting a free lunchtime webinar tomorrow, Tuesday, July 29th from noon to 1 pm ET to discuss the AIA (America Invents Act) trials and Federal Register Request for Comments about the trials. Acting Vice Chief Judge Scott Boalick, who heads the Trial Section of the Board, will address the questions posed in the Federal Register for public comment about the trials. Question topics include the claim construction standard used by the Board, amendment practice, and management of concurrent proceedings. There will be time for questions and comments from participants too.


Event number: 990 690 901
Event password: 12345

Federal Register Request for Comments =

Please join the webinar to help the Board strengthen the trial proceedings and ensure fairness to all parties.


Visit the AIA micro-site to view other newly added features.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Effectiveness of Virtual Marking for Patents

The America Invents Act (AIA) requires the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to report on the effectiveness of virtual marking as an alternative to physically marking articles with patent information. The AIA contained a provision permitting a virtual mark as a means of providing public notice that an article is subject to patent protection in lieu of a physical mark on the patented article. The AIA mandates the USPTO to complete the report for Congress by September 16, 2014.
To fulfill its AIA reporting requirement, the USPTO is seeking public comment on specific aspects of virtual marking:
  • whether virtual marking is effective for giving public notice;
  • whether virtual marking has limited or improved the public’s ability to access patent information;
  • whether and what legal issues arise from virtual marking; and
  • whether virtual marking has any deficiencies.

Comments on these topics, along with any other issues or experiences regarding virtual marking, may be emailed to by July 16, 2014.
For more information about the Virtual Marking Report access

Optimum First Action and Total Patent Pendency

The Wednesday, July 9, 2014 Federal Register (Vol. 79, No. 131, Pages 38854-38855) contains a request for comments about the optimum first action and total pendency for patents. The summary follows.
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is seeking public input on optimal patent first action and total pendency target levels. The current targets of ten month average first action pendency and twenty month average total pendency were established with stakeholder input in the previous USPTO 2010-2015 Strategic Plan. In the USPTO 2014-2018 Strategic Plan, the USPTO included an initiative to ``work with stakeholders to refine long-term pendency goals, while considering requirements of the IP community''. The USPTO recognizes the importance of continually refining and defining optimal pendency to take into consideration the external environment affecting workload inputs, the commitments made to the fee paying public, and the need to ensure a balance between workload, production capacity, and requirements of the Intellectual Property (IP) community. As a first step in beginning that initiative, the USPTO is seeking public input about IP community's suggestions for optimal patent first action and total pendency target levels.

DATES: Comment Deadline Date: Written comments must be received on or before September 8, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Comments must be sent by electronic mail message over the Internet addressed to:

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gregory L. Mills, Office of the Commissioner for Patents, at 571-272-1439.

More information is available at: