PTAB Dissents in Ex Parte Appeals

Most ex parte appeals at the PTAB are primarily determined by the judge designated to take the lead on the case. There are so many cases to handle, most judges do not take the time to dissent, even if they might disagree with the decision. So, when you see an actual dissent, it's probably worth reading. 

A recent case illustrates disagreement over, you guessed it, Section 101. The case is SN 14/012,997 handled by Bay Area firm Wilson Sonsini. The decision affirmed the Section 101 rejection. The main claim on appeal recited a series of "modules" for various operations related to web pages. 

The majority opinion reads like most Section 101 affirmances... the claims recite data gathering and other things could be performed by a human... affirmed.  There really is nothing out of the ordinary about the decision and many claims that seem technologically more developed than this claim are also affirmed as rejected by the PTAB on a daily basis.  

But here, one of the PTAB judges (judge Moore), dissented and wrote a clear, concise argument that, like many other cases on appeal, would seem to be quite convincing. From the dissent:


So, perhaps there is some hope if more judges at the PTAB can start to follow precedent and think about the technical solutions being claimed, rather than jump to the idea of mere data gathering for an easy affirmance.  I'm not holding my breath.