|TLJ News from June 16-20, 2011|
USPTO Makes PPH Announcements Regarding Korea, Israel and Nordic Countries
6/20. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) made three announcements regarding Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot projects pertaining to patent offices in Korea, Israel, and the Nordic countries of Denmark, Iceland and Norway.
The USPTO announced the expansion of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) - Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot program with the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO).
The USPTO stated in one release that "The USPTO-KIPO PCT-PPH pilot started June 1, 2010 and originally allowed only PCT work product from KIPO as a basis to enter PPH at the USPTO. The expanded pilot will now permit PCT work product done by the USPTO as a basis to enter into KIPO. The expedited examination in each office allows applicants to obtain corresponding patents faster and with greater quality in each country. The PCT-PPH program will use international written opinions and international preliminary examination reports developed within the framework of the Patent Cooperation Treaty."
Also, "The expanded portion of the pilot will start on July 1, 2011, and is set to expire on May 31, 2012, but may be extended".
The USPTO also announced a new PPH pilot project with the Israel Patent Office (ILPO). The USPTO stated in another release that this "will permit each office to benefit from work previously done by the other office, which reduces the examination workload and improves patent quality. The expedited examination in each office allows applicants to obtain corresponding patents faster and more efficiently in each country. Under the PPH pilot program, an Office of Second Filing (OSF) may utilize the search and examination results of a national application filed in the Office of First Filing (OFF) in a corresponding application filed under the Paris Convention in the OSF." The USPTO added that "The trial period will start on July 1, 2011, and is set to expire on June 30, 2012, but may be extended".
The USPTO announced another new PPH pilot project with the Nordic Patent Institute (NPI) based on NPI's PCT work products. The USPTO stated in a third release that this "will permit the USPTO to benefit from the PCT work previously done by the NPI". Also, "The trial period will start on July 1, 2011, and is set to expire on June 30, 2012, but may be extended".
Update on John Bryson and Gary Locke Nominations
6/20. President Obama announced his intent to nominate John Bryson to be Secretary of Commerce on May 31, 2011. See, White House news office release. He nominated Bryson on June 16. See, release. If confirmed by the Senate, he would replace Gary Locke, the current Secretary of Commerce.
President Obama announced his intent to nominate Locke (at right) to be Ambassador to the People's Republic of China on March 9, 2011. See, story titled "Obama Picks Gary Locke to Be Ambassador to China" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 2,202, March 10, 2011. Obama then nominated Locke on March 31, 2011.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) held a hearing on Locke on May 26, 2011. See, SFRC web page for this hearing. The SFRC has not yet approved this nomination. However, the Locke nomination on the agenda for the SFRC's business meeting scheduled for June 23, 2011.
The Senate Commerce Committee (SCC) has jurisdiction over the Bryson nomination. The SCC will hold a hearing on this nomination on June 21, 2011. See, notice.
The Department of Commerce (DOC) includes several components that are involved in information and communications technology policy, including the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) which has responsibilities regarding spectrum management, internet governance, and grants, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) which regulates exports and transfers of ICT products, services and information.
Also, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, but neither the Copyright Office nor the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, is a component of the DOC.
Bryson is a former Ch/CEO of Edison International. He is also a Director of the Boeing Company and the Walt Disney Company. See, Bryson's Disney biography.
Chris Dodd, head of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) stated in a release that "I look forward to working with him on the protection of creative content". He added that "it is critical that the Commerce Department, along with the White House and other federal agencies, help ensure that the industry is not decimated by the theft and illegal distribution of its creative products."
6/20. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published a notice in the Federal Register that sets comment deadlines for its 3rd Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) [110 pages in PDF] regarding extensive revisions to its Part 11 rules governing the Emergency Alert System (EAS). The FCC adopted this NPRM on May 25, 2011, and released the text on May 26, 2011. It is FCC 11-82 in EB Docket No. 04-296. The deadline to submit initial comments is July 20, 2011. The deadline to submit reply comments is August 4, 2011. See, Federal Register, Vol. 76, No. 118, Monday, June 20, 2011, at Pages 35810-35831.
Genachowski Announces More Staff Changes
6/17. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski appointed of Zachary Katz to a position titled "Chief Counsel & Senior Legal Advisor".
He will replace Rick Kaplan, whom Genachowski recently appointed Chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB). See, story titled "Kaplan Replaces Milkman as FCC WTB Chief" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 2,248, June 9, 2011.
The FCC stated in a release that Katz "will manage the Commission's overall policy agenda, and will be responsible for policy coordination among the Bureaus and Offices. In addition, he will continue to have specific responsibility for wireline, international and Internet issues, including universal service reform, Open Internet, and satellite matters."
Katz was Legal Advisor to Genachowski. Before that, he was Deputy Chief of the FCC's Office of Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis. Before that, he worked in the Obama White House Counsel's Office. And before that, he worked in the Los Angeles office of the law firm of Munger Tolles & Olson.
In addition, Genachowski appointed Sherrese Smith to a position titled "Senior Counsel". She is currently "Legal Advisor". The FCC release states that she will "oversee the Media, Consumer, and Enforcement bureaus".
Also, Genachowski named Amy Levine, who is currently Special Counsel, to the additional position of "Legal Advisor". The FCC release states that she "will take on new responsibilities overseeing the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and Office of Engineering & Technology, adding to her portfolio that currently includes spectrum auction policy and public safety issues."
McDowell Names McGrath Advisor for Media Issues
6/17. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioner Robert McDowell named Erin McGrath his "Acting Legal Advisor for media issues".
She will replace Rosemary Harold (at right), who is currently "Legal Advisor for media issues". McDowell announced in a release that Harold "has decided to begin considering other opportunities outside the Commission".
McGrath has worked at the FCC since 2000, including as a legal advisor to former Commissioner Meredith Baker, and most recently, as Assistant Division Chief in the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau's (WTB) Mobility Division (MD).
6/16. The Senate Judiciary Committee (SJC) held an executive business meeting at which it again held over consideration of the nomination of Steve Six to be a Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals (10thCir). His nomination is again on the SJC agenda for the executive business meeting scheduled for June 23, 2011. Six is former Attorney General of the state of Kansas who lost in the November 2010 election. The two Kansas Senators -- Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) -- oppose his nomination.
6/16. The Senate Judiciary Committee (SJC) held an executive business meeting at which it approved by voice vote the nominations of Marina Marmolejo (USDC/SDTex) and Michael Green (USDC/WDNY).
6/16. James Clayton Baxter pled guilty in the U.S. District Court (NDTex) to criminal copyright infringement in connection with his copying for financial gain copies of Adobe software, back in 2006 and 2007. See, Department of Justice (DOJ) release.
to News from June 11-15, 2011.