Launched today, The Touchstone Effect: the Impact of Pre-grant Opposition on Patents is a new book by the IPKat's friend Feroz Ali Khader. The Kat hasn't seen it yet, but he has been assured that it's in the post. It's published by LexisNexis Butterworth Wadhwa Nagpur, from whose website it can be conveniently purchased. According to the web-blurb:
"The Touchstone Effect: the Impact of Pre-grant Opposition on Patents explores the strategic use of pre-grant opposition as a touchstone to test the genuineness of an invention. In a comprehensible fashion, it guides you to develop an in-house, efficient and cost-effective strategy for challenging patents before their grant. It also gets to the other side to tell you what you should do if your patent application is opposed—that is, if you really have a Black Swan to protect".This book is planned as having a life of its own after publication, via Feroz's blog which you can visit here (the freely downloadable stuff include more than 55 decisions of the Patent Controller, discussed in the book and available as pdf files). If you're wondering about the Black Swan reference, you can find some helpful information here -- though the IPKat feels that a patent application that's opposed pre-grant may turn out to be more of a White Elephant than a Black Swan.
Feroz's intention is to explore the concept of pre-grant opposition (which still remains in India, more than 30 years after it was ditched by the British as part of the European Patent Convention package) and explains how it can be used strategically to check the genuineness of inventions. The IPKat is gravely suspicious of all this. Although he mourned the abolition of pre-grant opposition, he now thinks in retrospect that the plan to scrap it was correct -- it's just another expense-incurring and delay-creating mechanism on top of all the other ones we have devised. Still, if the law provides for pre-grant oppositions, it's vitally important for applicants and opponents alike to have a strategy or two up their sleeves.
Bibliographic details: ISBN 9788180385544. Price INR 295/US$ 14.75. Soft covers [why does this make the IPKat think of duvets ...?]. Rupture factor: as yet unknown.