New Portal Tames Patent Caselaw

Some patent lawyers might consider the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals to be a circus, but a new Web site aims to tame the lion of patent caselaw. Called FedCirc.us, the site is the latest and most ambitious project of the folks behind rethink(ip), patent attorneys and bloggers J. Matthew Buchanan, Stephen M. Nipper and Douglas Sorocco. The new site describes itself as a portal of patent caselaw built on a foundation of timely, accurate and considerate reviews of appellate decisions. Its central offering are reviews of all appellate patent decisions. These are summaries that digest and provide perspective on each case. Each review includes a case data box with a link to the full decision, citation and other information. Cases whose precedential value may be in question include “red flags” explaining the concern. Reviews can be searched or browsed by court, date or name. Key words are organized in a tag cloud. A feature called Gimme Ten! provides the most recent 10 reviews in a single page. Users can subscribe to receive FedCirc.us updates by RSS or e-mail.

The site is clear that its goal of timely case reporting does not mean immediate case reporting. In general, it says, case reviews will be published “a couple weeks” behind a decision’s release. If the site has a weakness, this is it. But assuming the collection of reviews continues to grow and be comprehensive, the site should prove to be an essential resource for patent practitioners.

Meanwhile, watch for more to come as this trio of patent lawyers continues to develop the site. Coming soon, they say: a patent law podcast.