May 20, 2017

AIPLA Proposes New 101 to Save the Patent System

By Bryan K. Wheelock, Principal

The AIPLA has proposed a new Section 101:

35 U.S.C. § 101—Inventions Patentable

(a) Eligible Subject Matter.—Whoever invents or discovers any useful process, machine, manufacture, composition of matter, or any useful improvement thereof, shall be entitled to a patent therefor, subject only to the conditions and requirements set forth in this title.

(b) Sole Exceptions to Subject Matter Eligibility.—A claimed invention is ineligible under subsection (a) only if the claimed invention as a whole exists in nature independent of and prior to any human activity, or can be performed solely in the human mind.

(c) Sole Eligibility Standard.—The eligibility of a claimed invention under subsections (a) and (b) shall be determined without regard to the requirements or conditions of sections 102, 103, and 112 of this title, the manner in which the claimed invention was made or discovered, or whether the claimed invention includes an inventive concept.

This proposed version of 101 would eliminate the “abstract idea” exception created by the Supreme Court, which the courts have been unwilling (and unable) to properly define, and which has denied protection to inventors of novel and useful computer related innovations.

It is about time that the patent bar solved the patentability problem it created.  Hopefully this proposal or something similar will end the tyranny that is Alice v. CLS.