is a shareholder at the Portland-based firm Kolisch Hartwell. A former physics professor at Cal Poly, the University of Oregon and Lewis & Clark College, Shawn splits his time between patent litigation, patent and trademark prosecution, opinion and expert work across many industries and fields of technology. In addition to a law degree, Shawn holds a B.S. in applied mathematics and an M.S. in applied physics from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from UC Santa Barbara. Shawn is a member of both the Oregon Bar and the Arizona Bar.
Protecting intellectual property today is more challenging than ever, and the stakes are high. An open and rapid-fire exchange of information has become the norm in our digital age. Add the global nature of the market and persistent technological advancements, and it should come as no surprise that imitators stand ready to capitalize on the latest breakthroughs. As their low-cost, low-quality products flood a market, not only do they claim valuable market share, but they have potential to erode the credibility of an entire category and its leaders. Any company that produces a product must consider the prospect of knockoffs, and the potential impact imitations will have on market share and brand perceptions. Obtaining IP protection directed at mitigating knockoffs can be highly beneficial, particularly for start-ups that may have limited resources and brand awareness.