Patent and Trademark Office
[Docket No. 980713169-8167-01]

Dissemination of Patent and Trademark Information on the PTO's
Web Site

AGENCY: Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice and request for public comments.


SUMMARY: The Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) plans to expand the
searchable database offerings on its World-Wide Web (Web) site by
adding additional patent data and by including trademark data. This
expansion will provide Web access to the full text of patents granted
since 1976 and to the trademark text data for registered and pending
marks. The PTO also plans to incorporate patent and trademark image
data and trademark data for inactive marks as part of its expanded Web
offering. The PTO requests public comments on its decision to expand
its Web site offerings.

DATES: To ensure consideration, written comments must be submitted on
or before August 26, 1998.

ADDRESSES: Address comments to the Commissioner of Patents and
Trademarks, Attention: Wesley H. Gewehr, Administrator for Information
Dissemination, Crystal Park 3, Suite 451, Washington, DC 20231; or fax
to 703-306-2737; or e-mail to Comments will be
available for public inspection in the Office of Electronic Information
Products, Crystal Park 3, Suite 441, 2231 Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jane S. Myers, Office of Electronic
Information Products, by telephone at 703-306-2600; by fax at 703-306-

[[Page 40105]]

by e-mail to; or by mail to Patent and Trademark
Office, Office of Electronic Information Products, Crystal Park 3,
Suite 441, Washington, DC 20231.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The PTO has been directed to disseminate
patent and trademark information using automated methods. See 35 USC
41(i)(2). The PTO currently provides the public with on-line access,
for a fee, to internal patent and trademark automated search systems in
its public search facilities located in Crystal City, VA. Thirty-one
Patent and Trademark Depository Libraries (PTDLs) offer on-line access
to PTO's automated patent full-text search system, and three
Partnership PTDLs offer on-line access to PTO's automated trademark
text and image search system and to the automated patent image
retrieval system. The PTO also provides access to subsets of its patent
and trademark databases on CD-ROMs in the PTO's public search
facilities and at 83 PTDLs located throughout the country. The PTO
sells its CD-ROM products to the public, and the Government Printing
Office makes them available to the Federal Depository Libraries.
Although the PTO has provided World-Wide Web access to searchable
patent bibliographic data since November 1995, neither searchable
trademark data, the full text of patents, nor patent and trademark
image data are currently available on the PTO Web site.
    The PTO hereby provides notice to the public of its plans to expand
searchable patent data and to begin offering searchable trademark data
on its Web site. In August of this year, the PTO plans to provide free
Web access to the trademark text data that is currently available on
the PTO's Cassis CD-ROM products--Trademarks Registered and Trademarks
Pending--covering active registered and pending marks. In November
1998, this trademark offering will include the ``clipped'' images
associated with these marks. In the future, this searchable trademark
database will be expanded to include inactive (abandoned, cancelled and
expired) marks and some additional data elements associated with those
inactive marks, and will be updated more frequently to reflect more
current conditions of the trademark database. Also in November 1998,
the PTO plans to expand its patent database offering on the Web to
include free access to the full text of all patents issued since 1976.
In March 1999, the patent offering will allow users free access to the
full page images of patents identified. On-line ordering of patent
documents issued since 1976 for electronic delivery, for a fee, is
planned for March 1999. Any such fee will be established by taking into
consideration applicable government policy, OMB circular A-130, the
Paperwork Reduction Act, and any other applicable statutes. The PTO
requests public comments on its plans to expand its Web site offerings.
    Dated: July 21, 1998.
Bruce A. Lehman,
Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Commissioner of Patents and
[FR Doc. 98-19993 Filed 7-24-98; 8:45 am]