Patent satellite offices sought by politicians
Lawmakers from Silicon Valley, Colorado and Texas are jockeying to win one of three satellite branches of the Patent and Trademark Office authorized in the law, seeing the projects as magnets for jobs, business and bragging rights.
“While the America Invents Act revamps the patent system for the first time in six decades, it also includes provisions to set up patent offices outside the Washington area for the first time. Those new offices are to be funded by patent fees — not direct government expenditures — providing fiscal conservatives a little cover.
Politics, however, is front and center in the lobbying under way. Even though the law calls for three new offices, one location has already been decided.
Under the law, one of the offices is slated for Detroit and already has a name: The Elijah J. McCoy United States Patent and Trademark Office. McCoy was a prominent African-American inventor. While Michigan certainly fits the criteria as a region with economic need, it also can claim 105,502 patents since 1977. And the state is home to thousands of engineers, some displaced from the auto industry and now looking for work…”
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