Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Public Interest Groups File Amicus in *Support* Of Continuation Rules in ED Va.

Eleven Public Interest groups recently filed a collective amicus brief in the E.D. Va., supporting the PTO's position on the continuation rule changes. The brief borrowed heavily from Lemley & Moore's 2004 paper titled "Ending Abuse of Patent Continuations" and the FTC's 2003 report to conclude that limiting continuations will help the public interest:

To be sure, while there is indeed a strong public interest in supporting innovation, that does not mean that incentives for patents should always be raised without considering the corresponding cost to society. Congress has intentionally implemented a patent system that balances the incentives provided to patentees with the benefit to the public of the disclosure and ultimate dedication of the resulting inventions to society. Thus, the public interest lies in an efficiently functioning patent system, not one that is subject to abuse and manipulation. Since the Final Rules will help the USPTO achieve this goal, they are in the public interest.
Interestingly, the brief suggests that patent applicants and practitioners are not entirely within the purview of the "public interest":
[A]rguments regarding the public interest made by patent holders and patent attorneys should be carefully scrutinized, because they are, in fact, the special interests that benefit from the patent system and what benefits them personally may not actually benefit the public interest.
Read/download the brief here (link)

Read PubPat press release here (link)

Members of the "Public Interest Amici" include:

  • The Public Patent Foundation ("PUBPAT"),
  • Computer & Communications Industry Association ("CCIA"),
  • The AARP,
  • Consumer Federation of America (“CFA”),
  • Essential Action,Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (“FTCR”),
  • Initiative for Medicines, Access &Knowledge (“IMAK”),
  • Knowledge Ecology International (“KEI”),
  • Prescription Access Litigation(“PAL”),
  • Public Knowledge (“PK”),
  • Research on Innovation (“ROI”), and
  • Software Freedom LawCenter (“SFLC”)

2 Comentários:

Anonymous said...

I guess AARP wants cheaper drugs but doesn't want to pay for new drug development. Either that, or it figures its present members will decease before new drugs are needed. So sad and short-sighted, but what would you expect? America is descending into the greatness of its past.

Anonymous said...

As a supporter of the PTO rules, this brief is very interesting. On the one hand, it is not a particularly strong brief. On the other, it finally gets into the guts of the policy issues that the PTO all but ignored in the PI briefing. It also creates a strategic dilemma for GSK: do you address the amicus arguments and risk highlighting them, or do you ignore them and hope the court does as well?

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