Patent me a Donut
Patent Reform Act Proposes Sweeping Changes:
"Geccie writes 'CNet is reporting that Senators Patrick Leahy and Orin Hatch have proposed sweeping changes in the patent system in the form of the Patent Reform Act of 2006. Key features are the ability to challenge (postgrant opposition) with the Senate version being somewhat broader and better than the house version.' From the article: 'Specifically, it would shift to a 'first to file' method of awarding patents, which is already used in most foreign countries, instead of the existing 'first to invent' standard, which has been criticized as complicated to prove. Such a change has already earned backing from Jon Dudas, chief of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.'In case I haven't mentioned it, I'm an advocate of Intellectual Property (some refer to it as Information Policy) rights reform. I think the copyright and patent systems should be restructured.
My rather uniformed opinion is that the processes as they are now, do not seem to encourage and reward innovation as much as they create semi-arbitrary rules for the entities with the most power to play by.
From the perspective of how exhibitors and distributors could be more flexible, I think copyrights should be devalued and things should enter the public domain more quickly. To be honest, I don't know much about patents. Ironically, I filed for one (with a group) last quarter, and it seemed the only point was as a protection against someone trying to take advantage of the system.
In any event, none of this seems terribly relevant to the legislation that's being proposed. I just think it's generally a good thing, that this is an issue on people's minds. I had been worried that this was something that would never change.