Along with Professor Mark Webbink, Executive Director of the Center for Patent Innovations at New York Law School, today EFF filed comments in response to the Patent Office's Proposals on Streamlined Patent Reexamination Proceedings.
We applaud the Patent Office's (PTO) efforts to streamline the reexamination process, which can be slow and expensive. Patent reexaminations can serve as a crucial check when the PTO has issued an overbroad patent that is harmful to the public interest. That's one reason EFF launched its Patent Busting Project, which has been successful in narrowing and, in some cases, invalidating harmful and overbroad patents.
It’s especially important to make sure that the PTO hears the voice of third parties – individuals and businesses that don’t often apply for patents or otherwise interact with the PTO but whose day-to-day activities may be profoundly affected by PTO decisions. In many instances, those third parties have an important perspective on how to best implement processes that reject bad patents and allow innovation to thrive. EFF will continue to be a voice for those third parties before the Patent Office and support policies and reforms that will spur innovation.