When you own property rights like patents or trademarks, you have the right to stop infringers.  But only if you know they exist. Often an infringer will be operating below your radar and will come to your attention only late in the game, when the infringer is entrenched and reluctant to back off. How can we detect infringers as quickly as possible, so that their response is “Oops, sorry!” and not “So sue me!”?  We call it “policing.” Or “watching.” And it doesn’t happen automatically. Imagine you’re selling Redstone® brand pistols.  You’re  [...]


On approach to NASGW No, it’s nothing to worry spouses of those of us who visit several industry gatherings per year.  But, there’s something special about NASGW.  I always used to say it’s the show they put on just for me, so I can meet with 100 clients in one practical venue, plus see other friends.  But something kept coming up in Pittsburgh last month when I was taking to friends at the show.  The serene hall, the lack of time pressure, and the smaller area meant there was more time to really connect.  This is the show where we can take the time to chew  [...]


(What Their Trademark Filings Reveal) Read on to see how this resolutely ties in to trademarks Every month on behalf of my clients, and to keep tabs on the industry, I personally search and review every trademark in the industry.  I like to know who’s filing what, and even who’s doing the filing.  I can sometimes get a peek behind the curtain when a major company has their lawyers file an application even before a potential new product is announced, and with trademarks being selected to suggest characteristics of the product, it can be very revealing. My  [...]

“Thank You U.S. Congress”

Words I Thought I'd Never Utter If You're a Firearms Innovator It’s been five years since Congress enacted sweeping patent law changes that transformed how my clients earn patent rights.  I try to be observant and to follow the trends, especially in my small specialized world where law, technology, and guns intersect.  But I managed to underestimate the significance on what I think is the biggest thing to happen in United States Patent Law in my lifetime. Look at the chart to the left.  If you saw that explosive exponential pattern anywhere, you’d know  [...]

How to Get Top Dollar for Your Company in 5 Years

Almost five years ago I wrote that headline. Those who took the advice that month would be in negotiations for a transaction that closes early next year. Since I wrote that, we’ve been through several cycles of “Smart money is acquiring companies” and “Nobody is investing!” The lesson here is not to rely on the current climate to drive your optimism about selling your company in the years ahead. The key is to prepare now for the possibility that the right economy, the right buyer, and the right situation in your life might possibly arise at the right time in the  [...]

The World’s Most Famous Shooter?

How to Avoid Annoying Fans? At last month’s NRA show in my hometown, I was happy to bump into Donald Trump Jr. to offer him a copy of my book. As you can see, he’s carrying a shopping bag in each hand. Smart celebrity trick to avoid shaking every hand at public events, and having to accept books being thrust at you from patent lawyers. I trust that the bags weren’t just decoys, but were filled with goodies from every gun company he visited. After all, who wouldn’t want to have such a prominent shooter and gun guy using their gear? That got me to thinking.  [...]