Technology and Trends
 USENET Archives
  
NNewsgroups: misc.int-property,misc.legal
Path: nntp.gmd.de!xlink.net!fauern!news.th-darmstadt.de!
terra.wiwi.uni-frankfurt.de!zeus.rbi.informatik.uni-frankfurt.de!news.dfn.de!
darwin.sura.net!gatech!news-feed-1.peachnet.edu!news.duke.edu!eff!news.kei.com!
world!rp
From: r...@world.std.com (Richard Pavelle)
Subject: Letter to President Clinton  regarding proposed patent law changes
Message-ID: <CtIBr5.G85@world.std.com>
Organization: The World Public Access UNIX, Brookline, MA
Date: Mon, 25 Jul 1994 17:40:16 GMT
Lines: 220


I am posting this copy of a news release and letter to President Clinton
for Paul Heckel and Rolf Rudestam. The material below is self explanatory.
The undersigned would like this letter to have the broadest possible
dissemination. If you strongly agree with these issues then you could
contact your representatives and senators. You may also take the letter, 
append your signature and mail it to President Clinton. You may also wish
to contact Paul Heckel as suggested below. Please do not contact me.

NEWS RELEASE

Editors Contact:		Rolf C. Rudestam, APR, Fellow PRSA
				The Rudestam Group
				Phone: 909/585-2012
				Fax:   909/585-6122
								
American Inventors Voice Serious Concerns About Proposed Patent Law 
Changes In Letter To President Clinton

	Los Altos, Calif., July 25, 1994 -- Fifty American inventors, whose
inventions range from the cardiac pacemaker, to Kitty Litter, to the monolithic
integrated circuit, and even to the water bed, have addressed a letter to
President Clinton expressing their deep concern about proposed changes to the
American patent system contained in the General Agreement on Tariff and Trade
(GATT) implementing legislation. As proposed, this portion of the implementing
legislation would, without debate before Congress, change the historical patent
term from 17 years from the date of issuance to 20 years from the date of
filing, a significant change in American patent law.
	The letter was sent to the President by the Intellectual Property
Creators, a coalition that includes the United Inventors Association of the
USA, the American College of Physician Inventors, The Inventors Voice, the
National Congress of Inventors Organizations and Donald Banner, who was Patent
Commissioner under President Jimmy Carter.
	The more than 50 original signatories -- including two Nobel Laureates,
15 members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, seven members of the
American College of Physician Inventors and other independent inventors --
believe that the proposed changes would rob the United States of its
technological leadership.
	Additionally, the coalition is calling on all Americans -- the public
as well as all inventors, entrepreneurs, University staff and faculty, and
small businesses -- to immediately contact their Senators and Congressmen,
Patent Commissioner Lehman (Fax 703/305-8664, Phone 703/305-8600) and President
Clinton (Fax 202/456-2883), to share their concern that such significant
changes in the American patent system could be made without any public or
Congressional debate. The GATT implementing legislation is presently in
Congressional committee and is expected to be ready for voting by August 1,
1994. Time is of the essence.
	Americans who want to speak out or be kept informed on this issue can
contact: Paul Heckel, Intellectual Property Creators, 146 Main St., Suite 404,
Los Altos, Calif., 94022. Phone: 415/948-8350. Fax: 415/948-7319.

	A copy of the Open Letter to President Clinton, along with the signers
and some of their inventions follows.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

An Open Letter to President Clinton from America's Inventors

July 18, 1994

The Honorable William Jefferson Clinton 
The White House 
Washington DC 20500

Dear President Clinton:

	We represent a cross section of inventors who have developed inventions
ranging from simple consumer products to breakthrough technologies all of which
have contributed to our country's economic growth, standard of living, health,
and technological leadership. Most of us are not only inventors but technology
entrepreneurs. We share your concerns about the growth of the U.S. economy and
your vision for America's continued greatness, but we are concerned about
unnecessary changes being proposed to the patent laws in the GATT enabling
legislation.

	The U.S. patent system was established in the Constitution by our
founding fathers. it is a unique and crucial part of our free enterprise
system. It has made the U.S. the world leader, not just in pioneering new
product concepts and technologies, but bringing them to market. It is not a
coincidence that some of those who framed our form of government were
inventors: Benjamin Franklin, a founder of the science of electricity, invented
bifocals and the Franklin stove. Thomas Jefferson, the first Patent
Commissioner, invented a cryptographic system that was used by the United
States during World War II. Lincoln, the only president to be issued a patent,
a patent litigator, and a technology president who promoted several new
technologies into use in the civil war, declared "patents added the fuel of
interest to the fire of genius."

	Nobel Laureate Robert Solow estimated that 90% of the U.S. economic
growth is the result of technological advances. Whole industries have sprung
up from the inventions of Edison, Bell, and the Wright Brothers. A review of
the signatories of this letter demonstrate that today inventors are still
creating new companies and new industries. U.S. technological leadership is
based on American inventors' willingness to challenge the conventional wisdom
and our patent system which supports them in that effort. The loss of the
vitality of our patent system will threaten our technological leadership.

	It is the people of the U.S. who benefit from the high growth, high
paying industries that are created by inventors and technology entrepreneurs.

	We understand that the enabling legislation for the General Agreement
on Tariff and Trade (GATT) includes administration language that would change
the present patent term from 17 years from the date of issuance to 20 years
from the date of filing. While most patents take 2 or 3 years to issue,
important patents, especially those in new technologies, take longer -- often a
decade or more. One of Gordon Gould's laser patents took 29 years to issue.
The proposed change would start the clock ticking before the patent issues,
thus encouraging delaying tactics by those who don't want the patent to issue,
penalizing inventors for patent office delay, and significantly reducing the
worth of the patent and the incentive to invest in developing the invention.

	The patent system, like the First Amendment, is a critical element of
the Constitution, designed to protect and encourage those who advocate change.
The proposed modifications to the patent law appear to have been inserted in
response to requests from those threatened by technological change they can't
control.
	President Clinton, you yourself understand the difficulty innovators
face. Indeed, you quoted Machiavelli on the subject: "There is nothing more
difficult to carry out, nor more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to
handle, than to initiate a new order of things. For the reformer has enemies in
all those who profit from the old order and only lukewarm defenders in those
who would profit by the new order..." 

	The proposed patent changes would rob the U.S. of its technological
leadership by tilting the playing field even more against pioneers and in favor
of the copiers.

	It is crucial that any proposed patent law changes be in a separate
bill, apart from GATT. Such proposals should be voted on ONLY after OPEN
Congressional hearings. Congress should have the benefit of testimony from not
just patent lawyers but inventors -- especially those who have founded
companies based on their inventions. If Congress is to change the patent laws,
it must understand how the patent system works from the perspective of not just
big companies and patent lawyers, but from inventors such as us.

	Passing GATT requires a minimal change to the current patent system.
GATT makes no reference to filing or issuance dates. The U.S. patent system
would comply with GATT by making the patent term expire 20 years from issue.
We adamantly oppose any part of the proposed "TRIPS" legislation that is not
absolutely required by GATT. We urge you to ask Congress to hold hearings on
any proposal on how to strengthen the patent system.

Sincerely yours,

Paul Heckel, for Intellectual Property Creators and the inventors listed below.

Members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame and some of their inventions:
Dr. Frank Colton, Enovid, The first oral contraceptive
Raymond Damadian, M.D., The Magnetic resonance imaging scanner
Gertrude B. Elion, D.Sc., Leukemia-fighting & transplant rejection drugs (Nobel
    Laureate)
Dr. Jay Forrester, Random access computer core memory
Gordon Gould, Optically pumped laser amplifiers
Dr. Wilson Greatbatch, The cardiac pacemaker
Leonard Greene, Aircraft stall warning device
Dr. Robert Hall, High voltage, high power semiconductor rectifiers
Dr. William Hanford, Polyurethane
Dr. James Hillier, Electron Lens Correction Device
Jack Kilby, Monolithic integrated circuit
Robert Ledley, M.D. The full body CAT scanner
Dr. Irving Millman, Hepatitis B vaccine & test to detect hepatitis B
John Parsons, Numerically controlled machine tools
Dr. Robert Rines, High resolution image scanning radar, internal organ imaging

Members of the American College of Physician Inventors:
Dr. Herbert Dardik, Umbilical vein graft
Dr. Thomas Fogarty, Balloon catheter
Dr. Arnold Heyman, Bard/Heyman urethral instrument system
Dr. Charles Klieman, Surgical staplers
Dr. Robert Markison, Sailboard hand grip for windsurfing and surgical
    instruments 
Dr. Lloyd Marks, Cardiac patient monitoring detector
Dr. Leo Rubin, Implantable defibrillator combined with a pacemaker

Other inventors:
Ron Ace, Lightweight photochromic eyeglass lenses
Dr. Sol Aisenberg, Ion assisted deposition of diamond-like thin films
Dr. Paul Burstein, Rocket motor inspection system
Tom Cannon, Computer kiosk for selecting and printing greeting cards
Bernard Cousino, 8-track tape
Charles Fletcher, The Hovercraft
Dr. George Freedman, Sleep apnea control system
Dr. Richard Fulsz, Rapidly dissoluble medicinal dosage unit
Elon Gasper, Speech synthesis with synchronous animation
Charles Hall, Waterbed
Paul Heckel, Card and rack computer metaphor
Dr. A. Zeev Hed, Freeze ablation catheter
Anthony Hodges, RSI preventing computer keyboard
Walter Judah, Ion exchange membrane
Martine Kemps, Speech recognition medical control system
Ron Lesca, Telecommunications equipment and electronic ballasts
Michael Levine, Magistat thermostat, On screen programming used in VCR Plus
Lawrence B. Lockwood, Interactive multimedia information system
Wallace London, Clothes hanger lock for suitcases, (London v. Carson Pirie
     Scott) 
Edward Jones, Kitty Litter
E. Cordell Lundahl, Stakhand Hay Handler and other Farm Machinery
Paul MacCready, The Gossamer Condor and Gossamer Albatross airplanes
Jacob Malta, Musical bells (Malta v. Schubmerich)
George Margolin, Microfiche readers, folding pocket calculators
Stan Mason, Shaped disposable diapers, microwave cookware, granola bar
Kary Mullis, Polymerase Chain Reaction (Nobel Laureate)
Tod Nesler, Non-fogging goggles for sport and the military
John Paul, Electronic ballasts
Bob Polata, Composite masking for high frequency semiconductor devices
Dr. Richard Pavelle, Method for increasing catalytic efficiency
Cary Queen, Document comparison systems
Peter Theis, Automated voice processing
Coye Vincent, Ultrasonic Bond Meter
Paul Wolstenhome, Self-erecting grain storage system

The Intellectual Property Creators Coalition:
ALPHA Software Patentholders, Paul Heckel, President
American College of Physician Inventors, Dr. Klieman, President
Donald Banner, Patent Commissioner under President Carter
The Inventors Voice, Steve Gnass, President
National Congress of Inventors Organizations, Cordell Lundahl, President
United Inventors Association of the USA, Dr. Jenny Servo, President