Sunday, February 18, 2007

Curious juxtaposition in patent reform

In a telephone press conference on February 5, 2007, Steve Pinkos, deputy under secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, noted among other things:

-->Patent examiners completed 332,000 patent applications in 2006, the largest number ever, while achieving the lowest patent allowance error rate -- 3.5% -- in over 20 years. At 54%, the patent allowance rate also was the lowest on record. <--

Meanwhile, on February 15, 2007, Adam Jaffe testified before Congress:

-->Ironically, the only aspect of the patent process that has become more certain is the application process itself, as the ultimate granting of some patent from each original application has become almost a sure thing!<--

Although Jaffe didn't give a reference for his assertion, one presumes he is relying on the studies of Quillen and Webster, the model for which allows a grant rate in excess of 100%. One hopes Justice Scalia (and Congress) can recognize gobbledeygook when it presents itself.


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