Friday fantasies

Forthcoming events. There's plenty to choose from on the IPKat's Forthcoming Events page, but some events come to this Kat's notice so late that he doesn't have the chance to get them loaded up on to it. One such event, organised by the UK branch of AIPPI, fits that description: it's taking place this coming Monday, 30 March. Titled "What’s the CJEU said this time? A review of the latest SPC musings from Luxembourg", it has much to commend it, apart from the fact that it's either free or cheap (depending on your status) and will be accompanied by refreshments.  If you love (or hate) the idea of extending the term of pharmaceutical patents, this is the place for you to be. Check it out here.

Thank you for the thank-you.  Safe harbour provisions and online service providers: A Discussion Paper is the latest set of state-of-the-art policy thinking from Mike Weatherley MP, former Intellectual Property Adviser to the Prime Minister but who is still placing ideas and advice in the public arena. Quite apart from this slender publication's discussion points and recommendations, there's one little bit that the Kats liked best. Under "Acknowledgem["Oh no they're not!", cries Merpel as we carry her kicking and screaming away from her keyboard]". He then graciously thanks this among others, this weblog.  Thanks, Mike, for thanking us (and by implication particularly thanking Eleonora for her excellent contributions on this topic). Giving credit where due is a great way of earning respect and making friends.
ents" the good Mike writes "I would like to thank the following organisations and individuals for their co-operation on this discussion paper. However, I should make clear that all opinions expressed in the paper are mine

The IPKat thought he should post this sufficiently early that it does not get labelled as an April Fool's story. If you are planning to work over the Easter period, and if your work requires that you access any of the European Patent Office (EPO) online services listed below, you may want to replan your weekend and go searching for Easter eggs rather than for patents.

From 19:00 Central European Time (CET) on Thursday 2 April 2015 to 07.00 CET on Tuesday, 7 April 2015 the following services will be unavailable:
Prior art check
  • Espacenet - patent search
  • European Patent Register
  • Open Patent Services
  • Online Fee Payment
  • My Files
  • Mailbox
  • Administration
  • Common Citation Document
  • PDF downloads from EPO website
  • Searching of EPO website
  • Searching of OJ
  • Searching of Board of Appeal decisions
  • Credit card payments
  • Contact forms
Online filing software, new online filing (CMS), web-form filing and the EPO website itself (other than the listed functions above) will be working during this period. The EPO is of course closed for the receipt of documents on Good Friday (3 April) and Easter Monday (6 April) so any deadlines are extended automatically to the 7th. The EPO's announcement (first spotted by fellow Kat David, who has a paw or two in drafting this item) can be verified here, in case you uspected that this Kat was playing a prank.

Even ordinary people
can become customers
of the UK IPO ...
Ever wonder what IP offices make of their contacts with ordinary people? From the UK Intellectual Property Office's Nigel Hanley (one of the IPO's Katfriends in Residence) comes the following: "As part of our visit programme we summarise the views and information that customers have shared with us during visits within an annual report which can be downloaded from the IPO website". And indeed you can download the IPO's report, Customer Visit Programme 2014, here.

There are probably national offices around the world that are more engaging, more efficient or more geographically convenient than the UK IPO [though there can't be many, to be sure, says Merpel], but there can hardly be any that take their mandate to be helpful and user-friendly than this office. Keep up the good work, adds the IPKat -- especially when it means not only listening to what your users say but weighing it up and acting on it.
Friday fantasies Friday fantasies Reviewed by Jeremy on Friday, March 27, 2015 Rating: 5


  1. Interesting to see that the report of the Customer Visit Programme includes a section on "Views on the EPO".

  2. Did I overlook a discussion of the Pink Lady case at the CJEC?

    This seems to be an important case relating to how OHIM must take note of decisions of a Community trade mark court.

    Wrote H. Bosch

  3. While this new initiative is no doubt of interest, it is no compensation for the IPO's ceasing, at the end of 2012, of the publication of its quarterly summaries of customer feedback. The old feedback is still available on their archive web site here:

    I always used to find people's actual comments etc. more interesting than the anodyne stuff that you find in official press releases etc. these days.


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