Today, I take a day off from intellectual property to say “thank you” to the men and women who have given their lives in service to our country, and to those protecting us around the world today. Amidst the barbecues and time with family and friends, take a moment to remember our young soldiers. And here is a link to Patent Barista’s 2008 Memorial Day Blawg Review. The posts it reviews are no longer topical, but the picture of the young woman lying down in a military cemetery is still just as moving.

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The legal blogosphere is full of analysis and commentary regarding the Patent Reform Act, here is more of the best:
Patent Baristas (surveying industry responses to the Act);
Patent Docs (discussing the witness list for Patent Reform Act hearings);
Patently-O (damages provisions analysis), and here and here;
Washington State Patent Law Blog.
And the Bilski amicus briefs began coming into the Supreme Court today. Click here for Dennis Crouch’s post with links to many of the amicus briefs. And here for Crouch’s post discussing the PTO’s Bilski guidance to Examiners.

Continue Reading Patent News: Patent Reform & Bilski

IPWatchdog Gene Quinn recently published his list of the top 26 patent blogs, based upon Technorati rankings (Quinn only considered blogs in the top 1M of the Technorati rankings) — click here to read Quinn’s post. Quinn manually determined which blogs counted as patent blogs, and did nice work. Although I would add the IP ADR Blog to the list. While I do not place much weight in blog rangings, the list identified a few new blogs that I plan to follow, and it is gratifying to see that the Chicago IP Litigation Blog has a strong reader base in the patent world.
Here are Quinn’s rankings:
Patently-O – Technorati Rank 21,202
Patent Baristas – Technorati Rank 61,134
IPWatchdog – Technorati Rank 80,245
Against Monopoly – Technorati Rank 80,245
Patently Silly – Technorati Rank 90,082
Chicago IP Litigation Blog – Technorati Rank 117,073
PHOSITA – Technorati Rank 101,726
Spicy IP – Technorati Rank 129,347
PLI Patent Practice Center – Technorati Rank 132,753
Duncan Bucknell Company’s IP Think Tank – Technorati Rank 136,348
Patent Prospector – Technorati Rank 152,448
Securing Innovation – Technorati Rank 162,007
Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog – Technorati Rank 163,794
The Invent Blog- Technorati Rank 167,214
Promote the Progress – Technorati Rank 198,166
I/P Updates- Technorati Rank 213,371
IP NewsFlash- Technorati Rank 221,777
Orange Book Blog – Technorati Rank 221,777
The IP Factor – Technorati Rank 250,588
Philip Brook’s Patent Infringement Updates- Technorati Rank 273,434
Patent Docs – Technorati Rank 300,413
Antiticpate This! – Technorati Rank 351,677
Patent Fools (now operated by – Technorati Rank 351,092
Patentably Defined – Technorati Rank 614,978
Steve van Dulke’s Patent Blog – Technorati Rank 676,101
IP Spotlight – Technorati Rank 752,199

Continue Reading Most Read Patent Blogs

Here are several IP-related stories and news items that I found valuable or interesting:
* The Maryland IP Law Blog reports that Patent Secrecy Act activity was down in 2008, with a significant reduction in issuance of new secrecy orders — down to 68 in 2008 from 128 in 2009 — and existing secrecy orders down about .5% to 5,023 total in FY 2008 — click here to read the post.
* Daily Writing Tips warns against genericide — the death of a trademark caused by using the mark as a generic term — and gives numerous examples.
* A sincere thank you to Patent Baristas; Rush on Business; and Securing Innovation. I do not buy into the blog awards or best blog lists, but it is an honor to be nominated for Blawg Review of the year by such accomplished bloggers and lawyers. My 2008 Blawg Review was an ode to world record swims and America’s favorite Olympic son Michael Phelps — click here to read it.

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While I head out to watch Chicago’s adopted son, President-elect Barack Obama become the nation’s next president, I thought it was appropriate to provide some thoughts on where the new administration might lead the IP community. I am an IP litigator and fortunate enough to be able to watch one of the most amazing spectacles of our democracy, the peaceful transfer of power, but I do not pretend to be either a prognosticator or political expert. So I will leave the predictions to those who feel qualified to make predictions:
* Computer Business Review magazine’s Jason Stamper Blog;
* IAM Magazine Blog;
* Intellectual Property Watch Blog;
* National Journal’s Tech Daily Dose; and
* Patent Baristas.
[UPDATE:] Duncan Bucknell’s weekly podcast, which is always worth your time, discussed how the Obama administration might impact US IP policy — click here to listen to it.

Continue Reading Blogs Speak: Where Will the Obama Administration Lead IP

It is the time of year for the Best of 2008 lists. The legal blogosphere* is no different as evidenced by Blawg Review #193 — click here to read it — recounting the 51 weekly Reviews from this year and soliciting nominations for the annual Review of the Year award from anyone who has hosted or is scheduled to host a Review. As someone who has hosted (click here to read my 2008 Review # 173, and who plans to host another in 2009, I exercise my right to vote for the following Reviews:
Rush on Business — Click here to read Review #147 which followed law blogs as they participated in Iowa’s famous RAGBRAI cycling race/ride (I love cycling).
Patent Baristas — Click here to read Review #161 which provided a powerful message on Memorial Day.
Likelihood of Confusion — Click here to read Review #191 which took a legal look at the possible explanations for the miracle of Chanukah.
* Ed. how can you insist upon Blawg Review, but than refer to the legal blogosphere. Are you just trying to get to Mr. O’Keefe?

Continue Reading Best Blawg Reviews of 2008

Blawg Review #189 is up at Colin Samuels’ Infamy or Praise Blog — click here to read it. As would be expected of a Blawg Review Sherpa, Samuels’ provided an epic Review, centered around The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. In addition to excellent writing focused around a strong theme, Samuels features some excellent IP content, including my post about the unequal application of Twombly pleading standards in patent cases:
Maya Richard suggested four tactics to preemptively protect patent assets from patent trolls: monitoring patent filings for applications related to your portfolio; hedging risk with patent infringement insurance; retaining skilled IP counsel to build a case for major patent assets; and joining an industry protection group. Also writing on a patent-related topic was R. David Donoghue, who noted that despite the Twombly decision, “many district courts are requiring that patent defendants plead affirmative defenses and, in some cases, counterclaims to the higher plausibility standard.” He suggests remedies for this uneven application of the Twombly standards.
And as an encore, after seeing Twitter driving traffic to his Review, Samuels posted a list of the Twitter accounts of the bloggers featured in Blawg Review #189 — click here to read it.

Continue Reading Blawg Review #189

Here are several blog posts that are worth your time on this Monday morning:
* At Deliberations, Anne Reed warns of six mistakes that can derail voir dire — click here to read the post. Anyone who follows Deliberations knows that when Reed discusses voir dire, everyone should listen.
* The Federal Circuit heard oral argument in Tafas v. Dudas last week. Here is some of the commentary: Patent Baristas; Patently-O; PLI Blog;
* At IP ADR Blog, Victoria Pynchon offers to arbitrate your patent case and says under expedited AAA commercial rules you can get a decision within 45 days of selecting the arbitrator — click here to read the post. Amazing, I may try that in the dispute resolution clause of my next license agreement.
* Anyone who read his 2007 NYC Marathon Blawg Review will not be surprised that Eric Turkewitz’s post-Thanksgiving Blawg Review last week at his New York Personal Injury Law Blog was one of the best of the year — click here to read it.

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In re Bilski, __ F.3d __ (Fed. Cir. 2008) (en banc).*
Chief Judge Michel, writing for a nine judge majority, affirmed the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences’ finding that Bilski’s invention — a commodities trading method for hedging risks — did not meet the 35 U.S.C. § 101 patentable subject matter requirement. The Federal Circuit overturned State Street’s “useful, concrete, and tangible result” test as insufficient to determine patentability. The Federal Circuit held that the Supreme Court’s “machine-or-transformation” test was the only test for determining patentability:
A claimed process is surely patent-eligible under § 101 if: (1) it is tied to a particular machine or apparatus, or (2) it transforms a particular article into a different state or thing.
I found Judge Dyk’s concurrence tracing the history of the “machine-or-transformation” test back to the Patent Act of 1793 especially interesting:
In fact, the unpatentability of processes not involving manufactures, machines, or compositions of matter has been firmly embedded in the statute since the time of the Patent Act of 1793, ch. 11, 1 Stat. 318 (1793).
As with any major appellate decision, we will need eighteen to twenty four months of district court and Federal Circuit decisions to flesh out and fully understand Bilski’s implications. While we argue those cases and await the decisions, there will be plenty of law review and blog analysis. Here are some of the first (I will update with additional posts as they come):**
* 271 Patent Blog (glad to see Peter Zura back in the blogosphere);
* IP ADR Blog;
* Likelihood of Confusion;
* Patent Baristas;
* Patently-O (with Crouch’s usual, in-depth analysis);
* The University of Chicago Law Faculty Blog (Randy Picker has an exceptionally detailed take on the opinion); and
* WSJ Law Blog (saying experts are torn as to whether Bilski will make it to the Supreme Court).
* Click here for the opinion.
** I have updated the list of Bilski blog posts with some new ones.

Continue Reading Bilski: Some Business Method & Software Patents Survive

Memorial Day is over, but I was too busy at my community’s Memorial Day parade to read Patent Barista’s Blawg Review #161 Memorial Day tribute until late yesterday evening. The Baristas say they are not big “flag-waivers”, but from where I sit, they waived it well. Even if you do not have time to read the whole thing (which you should), you should click here just to see the picture of the young woman lying before a service person’s grave at what appears to be Arlington National Cemetery. It is sweet, sad, or maybe both.
And thanks for the link to the Blog’s Memorial Day post Baristas.

Continue Reading Memorial Day Blawg Review