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   anticipationn and obviousness
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Bill Richards
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Re: anticipationn and obviousness
« Reply #5 on: Sep 6th, 2007, 8:16pm »
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on Sep 6th, 2007, 12:22am, PE wrote:
go to e-formationcentral for more info regarding patenting process.

As Arte Johnson used to say:  "Verrry interesting!"
As I said in an earlier post on another thread, be careful about invention promotion companies.  That earlier post was in response to a post by "Friendly Neighbor".  The "verrry interesting" part is that they appear to be the same person.  I think being honest and straightforward is the best policy.  Apparently, not everyone feels the same way.
C'mon Friendly or PE or whoever you are, what do you think?
« Last Edit: Sep 6th, 2007, 8:17pm by Bill Richards » IP Logged

William B. Richards, P.E.
The Richards Law Firm
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JimIvey
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  jamesdivey  
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Re: anticipationn and obviousness
« Reply #6 on: Sep 6th, 2007, 9:44pm »
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Ah, the very thorny issue of self-promotion.  I sometimes post a link to a FAQ or article on my own site.  I suppose, in a way, I'm just as guilty of self-promotion.  Since few of the questions here are original (i.e., have been asked in various forms by others), I could very easily write a more elaborate set of FAQs and site myself in response to a good 80% of the questions here.  The reason I haven't has more to do with lack of time to write FAQs than with ethical scruples.  
 
Having said that, there seems to be a fairly recent trend of new posters recommending -- quite openly and blatantly -- that people go to their site and/or use their services for more assistance.  On the other hand, when I first started posting here, there was only one other professional and many of the replies were along the lines of "You will need to give me a $250 retainer before I answer that question."  So, it's not new.
 
I'll share my perspective on all this, but -- being a moral relativist -- I'm not sure it will help resolve the ethics of anyone else's behavior.
 
I only post links to my site when it's a deep link directly to the FAQ/article that I think answers the question.  I don't suggest people go to my site and browse around.  In other words, link or no link, my responses are intended to be informative.  FWIW, I think PE's post was mostly intended to be informative, the sole difficulty anyone has being with the last line.
 
More importantly, and impossible to get any sense from reading these forums, I won't take a penny from someone unless I think I can legitimately help them in a cost-effective manner.  Of course, many inventors are happy with my not taking a penny but would still like assistance -- but that's another matter altogether.  
 
I don't know about PE or e-formaticfunctionstuff.com and I don't care to look it up.  And, I don't think the answer as to whether that site represents a ethical practitioner/firm can be found here.  I think it's entirely proper for Bill or anyone to raise the issue and recommend that invention scam reporting site for people to do their due diligence before cutting a healthy-sized check.  But I have no problem with invention submission company scammers (not suggesting PE is one of them) contributing here -- as long as it's mostly contribution.
 
I think a way of subtle and inobtrusive self-promotion that seems to be a nice balance is to (i) identify yourself by becoming a member and (ii) including a link to your site in your signature and (iii) when it seems appropriate, saying "I have more information about that on my site if anyone wants to read more."  Believe or not, many of the readers here seem to be perfectly capable of clicking on links in signatures and by the poster summaries.
 
My two-cents....
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James D. Ivey
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Bill Richards
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Re: anticipationn and obviousness
« Reply #7 on: Sep 7th, 2007, 6:19am »
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I agree with Jim 100 percent.  It's the apparent shill-like subterfuge that bothers me.  Perhaps it's all relative, but I could never see myself signing on as a guest and, in answering a question, direct someone to myself or to someone in which I have a pecuniary interest without full disclosure.  (As Jim will attest, most of the professional practitioners posting here, if asked for help, will generally tell the OP that, yes, they could help, but so could many of the other qualified professionals here.)  Again, it's all relative, but the website in question here appears to be a legitimate attempt to advance one's knowledge of the patent process.  Sprinkled liberally throughtout the site, however, are links to invention promotion companies.  In and of itself, I don't have a problem with that (Well, I do, but mostly because I've seen too many clients who have come off much worse for the experience after having dealt with one.  Some with patentable inventions that have missed bar dates.  Maybe that's my bias -- see, full disclosure!), but if someone is directing others to a particular website, they should identify themselves.  I found it particularly objectional that the poster in question attempted to make it appear as if it was not the same person.
Bottom line, as I said earlier, straightforward with full disclosure is the best policy, IMHO.  (On a happier note, my wife would say I have no "humble" opinions.)
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William B. Richards, P.E.
The Richards Law Firm
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MattB
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  mbycer   MBycer
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Off-topic
« Reply #8 on: Sep 7th, 2007, 11:01am »
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Bill, Jim,
 
You guys have been great!  Thank you for all your help.
 
I just graduated law school and took up a job at a patent firm and your quick and insightful responses have been on the money!
 
Thank you again for your help.
 
Alas, in addition to learning, I also need to drum up some business.  I do this locally in AZ, but would posting my website on my signature deter your responses?
 
MattB
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Matthew L. Bycer
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JimIvey
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  jamesdivey  
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Re: Off-topic
« Reply #9 on: Sep 7th, 2007, 2:18pm »
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on Sep 7th, 2007, 11:01am, MattB wrote:
... would posting my website on my signature deter your responses?

Hey, if we can do it, you can do it.  I probably wouldn't even notice -- had to look just now to see if Bill has a link there, hadn't noticed one way or the other until now.  See?  Unobtrusive.
 
Regards.
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James D. Ivey
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