Friday, September 17, 2010

DRTV Industry will benefit on Fast-Tracking Patents

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) may soon be offering a way for frustrated inventors to hurry along their patent applications through a new, expedited system.

The Patent Office says this fast-tracking system is a response to many who believe that the patenting system is too slow to keep pace with the speed of technology.

“Some patents need to go fast and some need to go more slowly,” says Patent Office chief David Kappos. The plan would allow those who need a faster decision on their patent applications to pay an extra fee to have it expedited through the system.

The proposal could go into effect next year, after public input is completed this summer. Currently, and for its entire history, the Patent Office has reviewed applications on a first-come, first-served basis. This would be the first major overhaul to the patent process' system of acceptance since the Office's inception.

Many other government offices already offer expedited services at a higher fee, including the State Department's passport processing service. It takes an average of 34.6 months for a patent application to go from initial filing to acceptance, up from 26.7 months in 2003.

Currently, the Patent Office already offers a fast-track program for “green” technologies and that program has had good success. It’s looking to build upon these capabilities for this new, broader-reaching fast-tracking and will sure lead to a more productive drtv campaigns.