Imagine this scenario: every morning as you leave your house, the same person accosts you, punches you in the nose and takes $10 from your wallet. Eventually, you get in touch with someone in charge of regulating such boorish behavior and you convince regulators to draft a decree stating that your perpetrator shall no longer engage in such activities. This is wonderful news, of course, but then you’re told that your new decree must pass through a committee of regulators before it can issue. No problem, right? Who could oppose such a sensible proposal?
But when you show up to observe the committee’s deliberation, there you discover that this “committee” and your accoster are one and the same! Of course, he rather enjoys the status quo, so immediately expresses disappointment in the proposed regulation. Disgusted, you plead with your representative who agrees to “talk through” these issues with the committee on your behalf.
A few days later, you receive a call proudly alerting you to a proposed “compromise”! No longer will your accoster lurk unannounced to launch his daily sneak attack. “Thank God,” you think to yourself. But what’s this about a compromise? You asked for the behavior to stop, period. So what else is there to talk about?
Under the compromise, you learn, there is now a hotline you can call each morning which will inform you about whether or not an accoster will be waiting to bash your nose and collect your $10. Congratulations!
About the progress of H.R.1249, the Innovation Alliance had this to say:
The compromise language released yesterday does not end fee diversion permanently and enable USPTO to plan predictably and on a sustainable basis. In fact, it requires the USPTO to continue to rely upon the appropriators to have access to and use of all the application and other user fees it earns. Any future appropriations bill could easily divert USPTO funds to other uses. As a result, it will be difficult if not impossible for USPTO to make multi-year plans, to hire and retain personnel, and to improve operations and information technology, all of which are critical to decrease the substantial backlog of pending patent applications. Delayed patent issuance is tantamount to foregone innovation and unrealized American jobs.
Across the pond, folks are starting to notice what we’ve recognized for some time, saying “Maybe American politicians just do not have the brains to understand …”
- Lack of Commitment on PTO Funding is Killing Patent Reform (ipwatchdog.com)
- Nostradamus IP? As Predicted, Appropriations Chair Doesn’t Like Patent Reform (gametimeip.com)
- Federal Budget Debate Impacts Patent Office Funding (patentcalls.com)