Inventors Eye, a new electronic publication by the United States Patent and Trademark Office is a bimonthly publication for the independent inventor community.
According to the USPTO, Inventors Eye is for and about America’s independent and small entity inventor community. It is a community that has always been a vital and vibrant part of America’s invention heritage.
Inventors Eye will appear every other month. Each issue will feature information you can use, tips on working with the USPTO; events, organizations and meetings of interest to the community; issues that impact independent and small entity inventors; and stories about people like you who have become successful inventors.
The first issue offers a nice article about avoiding invention promotion scams. In 1999, the U.S. Congress passed the American Inventors Protection Act, requiring an invention promoter to disclose the following information about its business practices:
- The total number of inventions it evaluated for commercial potential in the past five years, as well as the number of those inventions that received positive evaluations and the number that received negative evaluations;
- The total number of customers with whom it contracted in the past five years, not including customers who have purchased trade show services, research, advertising, or other non-marketing services from the invention promoter, or who have defaulted in their payment to the invention promoter;
- The total number of customers known by it to have received a net financial profit as a direct result of the invention promotion services it provided;
- The total number of customers it knows to have received license agreements for their inventions as a direct result of the invention promotion services it provided; and
- The names and addresses of all previous invention promotion companies with which it or its officers have collectively or individually been affiliated in the previous ten years.
You have the unqualified right to receive this information in writing and before entering into a contract with the invention promoter.
The USPTO has additional information on scam prevention on their website, including a list of published complaints against invention promoters and a link to the Federal Trade Commission’s website where you can learn if a particular company has been investigated or fined.
The USPTO also wants to hear from you with your ideas for stories and features that will enable them to better serve you through this publication.