Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Which Patent Office Does It Best? Survey Says: "The EPO"

Joff Wild at the IAM Blog reported on an on-going benchmarking survey being conducted by IAM magazine and Thomson Reuters on various patent-related topics.  Recently they asked questions to various professionals regarding patent quality at the larger patent offices.


Examination Quality is "Excellent" or Very Good"

EPO - 70%

USPTO - 56%

JPO - 54%

KIPO (Korea) - 25%

SIPO (China) - 18%

Overall, Patent Quality Has Improved/Stayed the Same/Gotten Worse

EPO:  improved = 26%, stayed the same = 71%, got worse = 3%

USPTO: improved = 23%, stayed the same = 61%, got worse = 16%

JPO: improved = 17%, stayed the same = 78%, got worse = 5%

KIPO: improved = 34%, stayed the same = 61%, got worse = 5%

SIPO: improved = 58%, stayed the same = 37%, got worse = 5%

(interestingly, the USPTO's "got worse" rating is over triple the amount of any other office)


Examination Quality is "Excellent" or Very Good"

EPO - 56% (-14)

USPTO - 38% (-18)

JPO - 40% (-14)

KIPO (Korea) - 21% (-4)

SIPO (China) - 20% (+2)

Overall, Patent Quality Has Improved/Stayed the Same/Gotten Worse

EPO: improved = 28%, stayed the same = 64%, got worse = 7%

USPTO: improved = 20%, stayed the same = 62%, got worse = 18%

JPO: improved = 19%, stayed the same = 77%, got worse = 4%

KIPO: improved = 30%, stayed the same = 67%, got worse = 3%

SIPO: improved = 56%, stayed the same = 42%, got worse = 2%

When asked "what are the biggest impediments to quality," the answers were
(1) the pressure to get examinations done more quickly;
(2) the sheer number of applications being submitted; and
(3) government regulations.
Joff notes

Clearly, the EPO is regarded as the pace-setter among the world's leading patent offices; both the Koreans and the Chinese have improved significantly, but still have work to do. What our respondents are telling us about the USPTO, meanwhile, only goes to emphasise the job that David Kappos has in front of him. That said, it seems to me that there are still far too many people who believe that none of the offices we asked about offer high enough standards. There is room for all of them to up their game, at least as far their users are concerned.

Read the post in its entirety here (link)

9 Comentários:

Anonymous said...

The percentage of correspondents reporting that PTO quality "got worse" is interesting. Given the huge backlogs in PTO's all over the world, why haven't they all "got worse" at the same rate? If it is only the USPTO that has got significantly worse, and none of the others, well then it should be a relatively simple matter for the USPTO to "get better", no?




all ptos need to judge themselves before judging the inventors in the best interest of moral and social justice.

Sam said...

Hi,Sam here I saw your blog post is very interesting.This post concerning especially interested me.
I'm a community member at provides one of the most comprehensive worldwide sources of patent data - available in 15 languages. It’s a source for patent data, analytic tools and provides a hosted community platform enabling users to connect to generate business opportunities, including the licensing/sale of patent.Will like to talk(through email) to you,is this the right time to talk about or should we talk during weekends ?

Sam from Us Patents LLC

Unknown said...

These comparisons are not really fair unless the great differences in search and examination FEES are also noted.

Anonymous said...

The EPO sure was quick to pat itself on its back.

Anonymous said...

I'd be interested in knowing more about how they polled and who. I wouldn't be surprised if the Asian Patent Offices were ranked lower by people than they should because of the Western-centrism of many and internal prejudices.

Anonymous said...

Uh, the JPO rated as being good? Yeah. The JPO, where a 9 way rejection of a mobile communications device with references directed to a cordless telephone from 1983, a toaster, a hamster wheel, a wine cork remover, a foldable gazebo, an answering machine, a beeper, a megaphone, and a belt buckle is perfectly logical and fair rejection to make. GTFO.

I advise most clients to not even bother with the JPO.

Jamie - said...

Hmm... quality is a relative term, and if the various PTOs work with standards for assessing unity of invention, inventiveness, clarity, and sufficient disclosure, it is no wonder that they appear to have different qualities. One aspect which I find universal as a parameter of quality for a PTO is the ability to find relevant prior art. But I am not sure if this is reflected in the IAM report.


This Blog/Web Site ("Blog") is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. Use of the Blog does not create any attorney-client relationship between you and Peter Zura or his firm. Persons requiring legal advice should contact a licensed attorney in your state. Any comment posted on the Blog can be read by any Blog visitor; do not post confidential or sensitive information. Any links from another site to the Blog are beyond the control of Peter Zura and does not convey his, or his past or present employer(s) approval, support, endorsement or any relationship to any site or organization.

The 271 Patent Blog © 2008. Template by Dicas Blogger.