May 18, 2006

In two recent news releases, the USPTO has announced its most recent efforts to battle piracy, counterfeiting, and intellectual property theft. During a presentation for small business owners in Ohio on Monday, Sen. George Voinovich of Ohio and Stephen Pinkos, the U.S. Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for IP, discussed overseas piracy and counterfeiting, noting that worldwide IP theft “costs American companies $250 billion a year.” The USPTO also noted that small businesses “are particularly at risk because they often lack the knowledge and expertise to effectively combat it.” Mr. Pinkos also addressed third graders at an elementary school in New Albany, Ohio, about intellectual property, focusing on topics kids could relate to (like music and movies), providing examples like someone taking music from someone else and acting “like it was theirs” to profit from that IP theft. The USPTO has also set up a hotline (1-866-999-HALT) for its Strategy Targeting Organized Piracy (STOP!) initiative, providing “businesses the information they need to leverage the resources of the U.S. Government to lock down and enforce their trademarks, patents and copyrights overseas, both in individual countries and in multiple countries through international treaties.”

USPTO Ohio Business Seminar News Release: LINK
USPTO Ohio School Presentation News Release: LINK
Stopfakes.gov Website (for Small Businesses): LINK
Strategy Targeting Organized Piracy (STOP!) Initiative Website: LINK

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Mark Reichel
Reichel IP LLC

I am a patent attorney with Reichel IP LLC, where I concentrate my practice on patent drafting and prosecution, trademarks, and general intellectual property matters. I currently focus on the preparation and prosecution of medical device and other life sciences patent applications, and being actively involved in a number of local not-for-profit organizations.

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