Ideas and Opinions
Rohrabacher Calls for Accounting of Secret Suppression of Patent Rights, Continuing Fight on behalf of Small Inventors
On September 27, 2018, Congressman Dana Rohrabacher sent this letter to Andrei Iancu, the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO).
The letter asks the agency to correct the problems created by previous administrations with the Sensitive Application Warning System (SAWS), which ended in 2015. The SAWS program, in the congressman's view, was in violation of our standards for a fair patent system, because it purposely delayed patent applications based on secret criteria. Sometimes, the inventors were then vilified by the PTO for the delays. The SAWS program also sidelined many patent applications in deference to large entities, and favored market incumbents at the expensive of small inventors.
The congressman's letter asks Undersecretary Iancu to order the identification of these applications and the retrieval and placement of the secret SAWS documentation into file histories. He also requests that inventors be made aware why their applications were delayed indefinitely.