Friday 13 September 2013

Examination Matters -- but at what price?

"Examination Matters 2013" is the title of an attractive and interesting seminar organised by the European Patent Office in a couple of months' time.  It looks like this:

Examination Matters 2013

ExamMattersVisual2013 (JPG)Seminar for patent professionals
19 - 20 November 2013
European Patent Office, Munich

Register here

With "Examination Matters" the European Patent Academy is organising an in-house training seminar for Professional Representatives before the EPO.

First-hand experience on important aspects of your daily work will be exchanged by examiners and practitioners, which will give participants an insight into an EPO examiner's daily work and their way of thinking. The workshop-type character of most sessions will give the opportunity to discuss relevant aspects with the "other side" in detail and provide immediate feedback on your questions.

Target group

This event is directed to patent attorneys who are active in the prosecution of European patent applications before the EPO. 
The event is not just aimed at this: it gives the EPO a chance to indulge in a little data-grabbing. This is a bit like tagging migratory birds to see where they end up and how they get there -- it's relatively painless and provides all sorts of helpful data, one hopes.  The data grab is attached to the registration process and the first of its five pages look like this:
Registration form for seminar PS05-2013
The seminar "Examination Matters" takes place from 19.11.2013 to 20.11.2013 in EPO Munich.

Personal data

Section 1 of 5

Questions/Problems with your registration?
So far, nothing has been said about the cost:
Registration fee
EUR 350,-
This fee covers conference material, catering for the whole event and dinner on the first day for one participant. The fee cannot be split and is not refundable if cancellation is requested less than 28 days before the start of the event.
That's just the registration fee.  Let's not forget the cost of getting to Munich, if you're not already there, plus accommodation, plus the hidden cost of the time consumed by travel, waiting in lines for security and customs etc and the disruption to one's professional obligations -- many of which are urgent and time-sensitive, clients being what they are.

This blogger hopes that, once all the data is captured, the EPO will contrast the proportion of registrants who work by and for themselves or in small practices with the proportion of such practitioners within the profession as a whole.  Might that just persuade them to offer a wider selection of seminars and events that are accessible online, and thus easier to access for many people who can greatly benefit from them?

1 comment:

  1. No, not more webinars. We should encourage the EPO team to come to London or Manchester