On World IP Day 2007, the UK Intellectual Property Office published several booklets aimed at businesses and those wanting to learn more about IP and protecting it. (Link to resources)
"My IP" is a basic introduction to patents, trademarks, design and copyright. It’s easy to read, and peppered with illustrative photos and drawings to provide more interest.
"My idea - is a business?" offers a strategic plan to discover and protect your IP. It covers basic issues that companies new to IP or new companies ought to consider.
"IP Insight" is a monthly e-newsletter containing IP news (mainly from UK) and "how-to" articles. The questions answered column looks particularly useful - the questions in the first issue address real-world issues.No tags for this post.
Yesterday while browsing new IP-related blogs, I came across one from the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley. Someone had written a posting about the Nap Hal patent being revoked, but had mostly just parroted the Greenpeace press release.
Is this good journalism? I couldn’t help myself and left a comment to the effect that the author ought to check the facts first before posting. Unfortunately patent news, whether in blogs like the UC Berkeley one or in newspapers, is too often factually incorrect — e.g., headlines of ‘Microsoft patent overturned in reexamination’ when all that happened was a first rejection by the US Patent Office. I suppose the lousy reporting is in part impetous for my own blog. As other patent lawyer bloggers know posting takes a lot of effort and time; history needs to be researched, facts need to be verified, analysis needs to be carefully thought through. Journalists have a code of ethics (I thought) — but probably there is no teeth to it. I propose that all of us patent bloggers send comments to journalists who mis-report IP news so that accurate reporting becomes the norm.No tags for this post.
Almost as often as I encounter the misperception that having a patent means "guaranteed" income, I encounter the misperception that a patent application has no value - can’t be licensed - and, to add insult to injury, when it is published the whole world knows what you are doing. Moreover, you have no recourse to stop the wanton use of your invention.
While I have explained that applications do indeed have value, I have acknowledged that very little, if any, recourse is available against the "infringer" and even then, royalties are not available until and unless the patent is granted with claims substantially similar to those published and the infringer has actual notice of the publication. (See USC 35 154(d).) Until now. Just yesterday, the Federal Circuit appeals court in the U.S. has approved of sending a warning letter before a patent issues, warning of possible infringement of claims in a pending, published patent application.
Stephens v Tech Intern (04-1215)
How many times have I reminded the scientists to keep proper notebooks, including witness signatures? Mostly I was ignored. Now along comes a case in the United States District Court in California that shows again the importance of good notebook habits. This time the notebooks were needed to evidence inventorship of an unnamed inventor on a patent. Evidence of inventorship needs to corroborated, and generally a putative inventor’s notebooks are insufficient corrobaration of testimony, at least where the notebooks are not witnessed.
Two new licensing handbooks have now been published. The first is from ABSP (Institute of International Agriculture), a part of Michigan State University that houses externally funded international development project activities. The second is from Centre for Management of IP in Health R&D (MIHR).
For those who are interested in a training book for IP and Biotechnology, visit Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade site (link). This handbook is highly recommended.No tags for this post.