USPTO’s history is aptly described in John White’s excellent IPWatchdog post below. The agency’s recent capture by politics compels its future direction. Pervasive political influence inevitably reflects the IP objectives of better-resourced incumbents, whose use for patents may simply be overstaying their incumbency. Our patent system should encourage dynamic progress, forcing incumbents to be inventive while opening markets to new players. This requires a perceived commitment to a balanced competence that promotes patent reliability not investment-deterring uncertainty. John White’s post thoughtfully discusses the see-saw environment in which TTO’s implementing Bayh-Dole commercialization has been conducted during the past decade. His recommendations to reestablish the USPTO’s functional proficiency are sound.
Regime Change – USPTO By John White on Dec 04, 2016 11:15 am
The PTO then drifted towards being a very user unfriendly operation that has become a center of suspicion and cynicism. I do not think Director Lee necessarily played a direct role in this, i.e., guided this trajectory with policy objectives, but rather was present when it occurred. I do think, however, that politics and branding may have played a role. Kappos had been perceived as too “pro patent”; after all, he hailed from the PTO’s largest customer, IBM. Then Lee became the “anti-patent antidote”; hailing from a patent system foe, Google.