In a roundtable discussion, small businesses and other interested parties who represent various patent system users and practitioners, including small technology companies, patent attorneys who work with small firms, and venture capital firms that invest in small technology-driven businesses, discussed the patent reform and its impact on innovative, high-tech small businesses that use the patent system. Ron Katznelson, representing Bi-Level Technologies, a California-based technology business, argued that the change to the first-inventor-to-file system would put small businesses at a competitive disadvantage because the focus in the patent system would shift the timing of patent filings earlier in the invention process while increasing the required number of filings. Attorney Mike Messinger echoed many of Katznelson's concerns in his presentation, stating that small firms simply want quality patents and are willing to pay for them through higher fees if needed. Many small business representatives in attendance agreed that this compromise solution would lessen the potential negative impact on small businesses.
The Small Business Advocate Advocacy: the voice of small business in government June 2010 Vol. 29, No. 4 Proposed Alteration of U.S. Patent System Discussed at Roundtable by Joe Johnson, Economist, and Kate Reichert, Assistant Chief Counsel On May 20, the Office of Advo Advocacy invited small businesses cacy hosted a roundtable on patent and other interested parties who In This Issue reform and its impact on innova represent various patent system tive, hightech small businesses that users and practitioners, including Legislative News use the patent system. The topic small technology companies, pat was pending congressional legis ent attorneys who work with small Roundtable on Changes to lation (H.R. 1260/S. 515) which firms, and venture capital firms that U.S. Patent System . . . . . . . . .1 would radically alter the U.S. pat invest in small technologydriven ent system. The bill would move businesses. These diverse stake Regulatory News the United States to a “firstinven holders were able to present their tortofile” system from the current issues with the proposed reform EPA Defers Greenhouse Gas “firsttoinvent” system, harmoniz and offer alternatives that would Requirements for Most Smalls 3 ing the U.S. system with the rest of protect small businesses. the world. Ron Katznelson, representing Air Quality Rules for Boilers .3 While the U.S. Patent and Trade BiLevel Technologies, a Califor Advocacy Comments on Pro mark Office (PTO) lacks substan niabased technology business, posed Constrictor Snake Ban. .2 tive rulemaking authority, Advo argued that the change to the first cacy invited the agency to partici inventortofile system would put EBSA eSignature Option . . . .5 pate in the roundtable in order to small businesses at a competitive address small business questions disadvantage because the focus in Research Notes and concerns on the highly techni the patent syst
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