ACET uses government publications, court records, Freedom of Information Act requests made by ACET and by other interested parties, to gather information of potential interest to the public from the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). ACET disseminates this information to advance public understanding both of government process and of the effect such process has on technological innovation, intellectual property protection, and economic prosperity. ACET posts this information for public review and also publishes on ACET Blog analyses and commentary on such information. Please visit again soon to view new items as they become available.
Paperwork Reduction Act
February 2, 2017. ACET’s second FOIA request from USPTO on derivation of paperwork burden estimates and on guidance for complying with OMB PRA reviews. [FOIA Rrequest No. F-17-112].
December 19, 2016. USPTO Denial of ACET’s Appeal on F-16-215. [USPTO FOIA Appeal denial of F-16-215].
November 16, 2016. ACET second appeal to the PTO on failure to produce responsive records for FOIA request F-16-215. [FOIA 2nd Appeal on D-16-215].
September 6, 2016. ACET appeal to the PTO on it’s constructive denial of ACET’s first FOIA Request. [FOIA Appeal on F-16-215].
June-10-2016. ACET’s USPTO FOIA Request on derivation of paperwork burden estimates of ICR on Patent Processing (Updating), OMB Control No. 0651-0031. [FOIA Request No. F-16-215].
Sensitive Applications Warning System (SAWS)
The SAWS program was created to provide advance warning to USPTO management regarding U.S. patent applications that would potentially generate negative publicity or would otherwise embarrass the USPTO management if issued. The SAWS program appears to have developed into a mechanism for the USPTO to delay or even avoid the issuance of a bona fide U.S. patent application. The secret nature of the program and the vague and expansive criteria for flagging patent applications into the program lacked legal or technical merit.
Class Action. eVideo Owners et al. v. U.S., Federal Court of Claims, Case No. 15-413-LKG. The suit names eVideo as the lead plaintiff in a class of (yet unknown) applicants whose patent applications were flagged under the SAWS program. eVideo’s video on-demand technology is covered by two patent applications that have been languishing in the USPTO for over 13 years. The suit seeks damages in USPTO fees and prosecution costs in applications after they were designated under the SAWS program. See details.
Intellectual Ventures I LLC(“IV”) Action under the Patent Act and the Administrative Procedures Act against the USPTO. IV alleged that its patent application was repeatedly rejected including on appeal because it was flagged under the SAWS program. It provided testimony from former Commissioner for Patents Jon Doll on his part in managing the SAWS program. See details.
Danny Huntington FOIA Requests and litigation. Comprehensive FOIA requests on the operation of the secret SAWS program since its inception in 1994 until its retirement in March 2015. Records include memos, directives, reports, emails, and SAWS guidance for examiners. Records show that all pending pre-GATT applications were flagged under the SAWS and that the Board of Appeals received SAWS information on appeals for applications flagged under the SAWS. See details.
Gilbert Hyatt Mandamus Action against the USPTO, which admitted that his applications were flagged under SAWS. See complaint filed May 7, 2018.