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Posts Tagged ‘ Patent Litigation ’

Are Software Patents Stifling Innovation?

Posted: Friday, Apr 11, 2014 @ 10:00 am | Written by David Kline & Bernard J. Cassidy | 12 comments
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Posted in: David Kline, Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Reform, Patents, Software, Technology & Innovation

What if (Almost) Everything You Thought You Knew About America’s “Broken” Patent System Was Wrong?

What follows is the fourth and final installment in the “Myths of the Patent Wars” series.

The necessary legislative effort to curb bad actors in the patent industry has been “hijacked” by a small handful of very powerful global technology companies intent on forcing broader changes in the patent system to make it better serve their business interests.

Under the banner of “patent reform,” these giant firms have spent tens of millions of dollars on lobbyists and media relations to promulgate a series of dramatic but false claims about America’s supposedly-“broken” patent system — claims that are now almost universally accepted as true by the media, Congress, and the public at large.

In Parts 1 and 2 of this series, we examined the false claim that there is an “explosion of patent litigation greater than any in history” as well as the myth that non-practicing entities are a new breed of parasitic patent holder who contributes nothing to society. In Part 3, we debunked the myth that NPEs are stampeding the International Trade Commission with spurious infringement claims, as well as the myth that excessive damages are being won in litigation.



The ITC and Excessive Patent Damages Myths

Posted: Thursday, Apr 10, 2014 @ 10:00 am | Written by David Kline & Bernard J. Cassidy | No Comments »
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Posted in: David Kline, Government, Guest Contributors, International Trade Commission, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patents

What if (Almost) Everything You Thought You Knew About America’s “Broken” Patent System Was Wrong?

What follows is the third installment in the four-part “Myths of the Patent Wars” series.

The necessary legislative effort to curb bad actors in the patent industry has been “hijacked” by a small handful of very powerful global technology companies intent on forcing broader changes in the patent system to make it better serve their business interests.

Under the banner of “patent reform,” these giant firms have spent tens of millions of dollars on lobbyists and media relations to promulgate a series of dramatic but false claims about America’s supposedly-“broken” patent system — claims that are now almost universally accepted as true by the media, Congress, and the public at large.

In Parts 1 and 2 of this series, we examined the false claim that there is an “explosion of patent litigation greater than any in history” as well as the myth that non-practicing entities are a new breed of parasitic patent holder who contributes nothing to society. In fact, we showed that NPEs were consciously created by the U.S. Founding Fathers as a way to kick-start the fledgling American economy by involving as many people as possible — even those without the wealth or resources to commercialize their own inventions — to participate in innovation.



Are Non-Practicing Entities The Problem?

Posted: Wednesday, Apr 9, 2014 @ 10:00 am | Written by David Kline & Bernard J. Cassidy | 24 comments
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Posted in: David Kline, Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patent Trolls, Patents

What if (Almost) Everything You Thought You Knew About America’s “Broken” Patent System Was Wrong?

What follows is the second installment in the four-part “Myths of the Patent Wars” series.

The necessary legislative effort to curb bad actors in the patent industry has been “hijacked” by a small handful of very powerful global technology companies intent on forcing broader changes in the patent system to make it better serve their business interests.

Under the banner of “patent reform,” these giant firms have spent tens of millions of dollars on lobbyists and media relations to promulgate a series of dramatic but false claims about America’s supposedly-“broken” patent system — claims that are now almost universally accepted as true by the media, Congress, and the public at large.

In Part 1 of this series, we examined the false claim that an “explosion of patent litigation greater than any in history” is imposing an unwarranted burden on industry and diverting resources better spent on innovation. In fact, today’s patent litigation rate is less than half what it was during the golden age of American innovation in the 19th century Industrial Revolution — a revolution which thrust the U.S. into the top ranks of industrial nations.



Identifying the Real Patent Extortionists: A Review of the Extortionist Demand Letter

Posted: Wednesday, Apr 9, 2014 @ 8:00 am | Written by Steve Moore | 1 Comment »
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Posted in: Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patent Troll Basics, Patent Trolls, Patents, Steve Moore

Congress is on the cusp of passing legislation that is said to be designed to control the so-called “patent troll.”  Of course, as belatedly recognized by the person who came up with the moniker “troll” in 1993, Peter Detkin (former Assistant General Counsel at Intel at the time), the word “troll” is often in the eye of the beholder.  Indeed nearly every litigator will tell you that term “troll” is commonly used against any opponent in a patent litigation suit, much as Arthur R. Miller asserted that “a frivolous lawsuit is any case brought against your client, and litigation abuse is anything the opposing lawyer is doing.” Miller, Simplified Pleading, Meaningful Days in Court and Trial on the Merits: Reflections on the Deformation of Federal Practice, 88 NYU Law Rev. 286, 302 (2013).



Myths of the Patent Wars: An “Explosion Of Patent Litigation” Greater Than Any in History?

Posted: Tuesday, Apr 8, 2014 @ 10:08 am | Written by David Kline & Bernard J. Cassidy | No Comments »
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Posted in: David Kline, Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patents

What if (Almost) Everything You Thought You Knew About America’s “Broken” Patent System Was Wrong?

What follows is the first installment in the four-part “Myths of the Patent Wars” series.

Four months ago, the House of Representatives passed the “Innovation Act” (H.R. 3309), which would impose sweeping changes to U.S. patent law and the judicial system. Now, as the Senate prepares to act on its own patent reform measure, the “Patent Transparency and Improvements Act” (S-1720), it’s more important than ever that we try to separate fact from the various fictions driving this unprecedented rush to alter a patent system that for 224 years has been vital to U.S. competitiveness and economic growth.

It is a glaring fact that patent trolls extort businesses and harm the patent system, and that measures to curb their extortionist behavior are needed. The lawsuits they file (or threaten to file) against small businesses are designed to extort nuisance settlements that are less than the cost of litigation and are called “strike suits” in legal parlance.



Overstock Prevails, Patent Trolls Defeated

Posted: Wednesday, Apr 2, 2014 @ 8:00 am | Written by Gene Quinn | 11 comments
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Posted in: Gene Quinn, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patent Troll Basics, Patent Trolls, Patents

Overstock.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: OSTK) recently announced that plaintiffs in two patent infringement lawsuits dismissed their cases against the company without any settlement or any money paid.

“They just walked away,” said Patrick M. Byrne, Overstock.com chairman and CEO. “Patent trolls find us unappetizing. While we have the highest respect for intellectual property rights, we don’t settle abusive patent suits—we fight.”  Byrne added, “You can’t fork over your lunch money today, and expect a bully to leave you alone tomorrow. Patent trolls understand a bloody nose and in the long run, it’s the asymmetrical response that pays off. It is only right that we take this opportunity to make explicit this litigation strategy. As Dr. Strangelove says, ‘What’s the point of having a Doomsday Device if you don’t tell anyone about it?’”



Patent Legislation Compared: Joinder of Interested Parties

Posted: Wednesday, Mar 26, 2014 @ 8:05 am | Written by Andrew Baluch | 1 Comment »
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Posted in: Computers, Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Reform, Patents

Editorial Note: This article is a portion of a larger work by Andrew Baluch titled Patent Reform 2014, modified here for purposes of publication on IPWatchdog.com. Baluch’s article is a comprehensive review of pending legislation developments in Congress, the Executive Branch, the Courts and the States.

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Congressman Goodlatte, chief architect of patent reform in the House of Representatives.

Patent legislation currently pending in Congress contains several controversial provisions. One of those provisions, which finds both proponents and opponents, is the provision to mandate the joinder of “interested parties.”

Those in favor of moving the U.S. patent litigation system to a loser-pays fee-shifting regime are usually also in favor of mandatory joinder, so that fee awards against a losing patentee can be collected against the “true” entity that may be hiding behind the plaintiff patentee. Opponents of the rule point out that it could lead to unwilling and unnecessary joinder — a point raised particularly by universities and venture capitalists who fear they may be hauled into costly patent litigation against their will if their licensees/startups ever need to enforce their patent rights in court. Still others point to the fact that these joinder provisions would only apply to patent cases — and only against plaintiffs — and would thus create a litigation process unique to patents in district courts. Furthermore, district court judges would lose most of their existing broad discretion to determine whether the facts truly warrant joinder in each unique case.



IP Games and Naughty Patent Fights

Posted: Tuesday, Mar 25, 2014 @ 2:57 pm | Written by Ivan Chaperot | 2 comments
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Posted in: Guest Contributors, IP News, IPWatchdog.com Articles, Patent Litigation, Patent Trolls, Patents

Regardless of the number of patent reform bills, IP industry conferences, and risk management business models, the number of patent infringement lawsuits remains exceptionally high. Resolving disputes through the inefficiencies of litigation represents an enormous waste of resources and lost opportunities. And this issue runs beyond the usual suspects—a GAO August 2013 report found that 80 percent of patent litigation is brought by manufacturing companies. Thus, IP games are being played on all sides, resulting in demon dialogues, negative patterns and quick escalations to legal actions. In order to foster productive discussions, both sides need to stop playing games and start being transparent and candid about their intent at each stage of an IP licensing discussion. This is a foundation for building trust, developing cooperative behaviors, and allowing business creativity that is critically needed in our knowledge based economy.

The dialogue begins with a demand letter from a patent rights holder, which can take the form of a soft invitation to enter into mutually beneficial licensing discussions or detailed allegations of patent infringement. Often times, the intent behind this letter is to seek a payment to compensate the patent rights holder for the commercial exploitation of its patented technologies by the receiving side of the letter, not to stop the exploitation. There is nothing condemnable in this intent– trading IP rights offers a way to support the broad dissemination of technological advancements, which in turn create rewards for investments in innovation and job creation. These IP trades are so common that seasoned IP executive speak regularly about “IP monetization” or “IP value creation” in trade associations (e.g., the Licensing Executives Society) and conferences (e.g., the IP Business Congress).