COMMISSIONER LEHMAN:  I will then ask Mr. Litzsinger to come
        forward, please, to fill this spot.
 
        MR. LITZSINGER:  Thank you, Mr. Commissioner.  I sincerely
        appreciate it.  We had a conflict, as you are probably aware of,
        later.  I'm Nip Litzsinger and I'm the Vice President of the
        Alliance for American Innovation.  We're located on Connecticut
        Avenue, downtown.  The phone number is (202) 293-1414.
 
        In Washington, the Alliance represents over 3,000 independent and
        small business inventors along with working in the best interests of
        a number of venture capitalists in a number of biotech firms.  Our
        clients are from coast to coast, border to border.  We're the
        fastest growing and only group within Washington that are actively
        representing the independent inventors as we progress.  You note a
        large audience today and none of our over 3,000 affiliates are here
        other than myself.  I know many of them have submitted testimony for
        the record.  We have received information copies of that testimony. 
        I've taken their comments in the development of the response to your
        14 questions.  Most of our affiliates believe that the discussion of
        the 18-month publication in isolation without discussing the 20-year
        term, without discussing prior user rights might be improper because
        they old fold together as far as the inventor is concerned and as
        far as the innovative community in the nation is concerned. 
        Additionally, reference to the 18-month publication may be very
        misleading, because I know I sat in on one of your presentations in
        Houston two weeks ago, to the inventors group and also to the patent
        attorneys down there.  At that time, there was a lot of support
        issued by your office for the provisional application.  In response
        to a question, the representative of your office indicated that the
        clock on 18 months started ticking at the submission of the
        provisional application. So, we're not talking about 18-month
        publication.  We're talking about six month publication in some
        cases.  Most of our folks are betting on the fact that, when their
        application is reviewed in six months, large multinational and
        foreign interests will have a product on the market that is
        significant by the time their patent is issued.  So, that, to us, is
        a real threat.  It's a real threat to the venture capitalists in
        this country and the others that are interested and anxious about
        what is happening as we go along.
 
        COMMISSIONER LEHMAN:  If that were true though, wouldn't the
        patentee at that time have exclusive rights vis-a-vis that other
        enterprise that would be on the market?
 
        MR. LITZSINGER:  He may or may not.  It would depend on enforcement
        and many of the patentees that we're speaking of find themselves on
        the short end of the stick because they don't have the financial
        resources to pursue the money that supports those other actions. 
        So, it isn't a given that this is a level playing field.  It is not
        a level playing field.  If in fact most patents are granted in 19
        and a half months, then why is 18-month publication required.  Why
        are we spending the money that we're spending on 18-month
        publication if the data shows that we are now issuing in 19 and a
        half months and we're going to get better?  Well, it seems to me
        that we're not going to get better.  We're going to get worse. 
        We're adapting our system to harmonize with foreign systems inferior
        to ours and less responsive to ours in issuing patents.  Needless to
        say, the following response that I have to your 14 questions does
        not in any way endorse your basic proposal, but here it goes
        quickly.  I have submitted them in writing for you.  These responses
        are a gathering of the responses of our affiliates throughout the
        country.  All official application-related materials could be
        delivered to one place.  There is no problem with that as far as our
        folks are concerned, in difference to what Mr. Riley said.  Standard
        application format is not necessary.  Information to be published
        may include the filing date, but not more than the abstract, if we
        have to live with this system.  The patent applicant should
        absolutely receive a copy of the published information upon
        publication. Accelerated examination under the present conditions
        should be permitted and there should be absolutely no charge to the
        applicant for filing and all costs should be borne by the PTO.  The
        answers to question seven are yes, no and should be definite, in
        that order.  Should priority or benefit be lost if not made within a
        reasonable time after filing?  The answer is no.  The answer to
        question nine is, that we do not care what is removed nor what is
        enclosed on the issued patent.  The answer is yes to questions ten,
        eleven and twelve.
 
        Our affiliates suggest that you tell us of the problems you
        anticipate in question 13.  Last but not least, protest procedures
        should be modified to permit third party submission as suggested. 
        Our question is, how?  Untimely submission by a third party should
        be handled as they are now.  I have been fortunate to travel in the
        past five years to about 15 foreign countries.  I am amazed at these
        European and Asian countries, of all of the innovation that is ours
        that is there, much of it under foreign corporate logos.  It is our
        innovation.  This is our system that has been in place for 200
        years.  In the past six months, we have taken some gigantic steps to
        put it out to sea, to be mediocre like the other systems are.  We
        are really playing with fire.  We believe that not only on behalf of
        the inventors, but of all of the innovative community in the United
        States, whether you're in corporations or whether you act as
        individuals or small business people, this could be tragic.  We are
        taking a successful system that served in not only our interests,
        but the world's interests and we are submarining it.  Thank you.