Friday, March 16, 2012

Erik Pelton's Summary of March 8th TPAC Public Meeting

Erik Pelton, at his blog, reports here on the March 8th meeting of the Trademark Public Advisory Committee (TPAC).

As to our favorite tribunal, Erik has this:

TTAB Update – Judge Rogers:
  • A new senior attorney, Cheryl Butler, was recently hired. Her duties include updates to the TBMP. An update to the TBMP is planned for sometime around May.

  • Cindy Greenbaum has been hired a the newest TTAB judge. She for the moment still in her former role managing the interlocutory attorneys until that role is be filled by a new hire, for which the process is underway.

  • TTAB is deploying a new “quality review” unit. The unit was formerly a pilot program and will now become permanent. One of its roles is to help to ensure accuracy in the history of proceedings in TTABvue, which is also helpful for having better and more consistent data for use in performance and other measures.

  • 20 precedents have been issued so far this (fiscal) year, up from the 38 issued the previous year.

  • The backlog of cases at the TTAB has increased lately (see data at Erik's blog). Incoming filings has seen some numbers up and some down from quarter to quarter over the last few years. But given increases in application filings the last two years, it is likely that TTAB filing numbers will trend up more consistently in the future if the application filing increases continue.

  • A few more cases are under ACR than in the previous years.

  • TTAB may hold an ACR roundtable over the summer once the staffing issues are addressed and filled.

  • The number of cases operating under the old rules is down to 268, 58 of which are suspended for settlement.


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