Posts Tagged: "interviews"

Michelle Lee on patent quality, IPR and trade agreements

During our interview Lee explains that she is supportive of expanding trade agreements currently under consideration in Congress, that she looks forward to working on patent quality and receiving feedback from stakeholders on how the Office can better address patent quality, and she explained that the Office was pleased with the recent Federal Circuit ruling in In re Cuozzo Speed Technologies, which is the first appeal of a final decision of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in an Inter Partes Review (IPR) proceeding.

Common currency creates challenges for the unitary patent

With the Euro once again in crisis people look back on the decision to go with the common currency and many people here believe that that was a step too far. That engaging in the expectation that if we do this it will naturally bring us closer together was perhaps way too optimistic. And too risky. And that risking the kind of fiscal instability that we have seen recently in order to push everyone towards a closer political union some people are saying now was a very bad bet to make, without a real supra-national bank and without having first knitted the countries together better politically.

Harmonization and the quest for an elusive international grace period

An interview with Jim Pooley, former Deputy Director General of WIPO – The actual changes that we might have to accept in a truly globalized, harmonized system are not going to be that difficult for us. The real difficulty is getting everybody to agree on one set of best practices. That, it turns out, is a political road that is just as difficult now as it ever has been. But the goal is clear, the goal is compelling and I think all of us need to work as hard as we can to push things in that direction. First of all we’ve got to get the industrialized countries to agree on a single approach, or at least an understood and aligned approach, to a grace period. Once that happens I think the other issues that we have to deal with will fall into place. We have to keep in mind that while the politicians or diplomats argue with one another, we have sitting on the sidelines all of our clients who are cheering for harmonization. They want to see this happen. And at the end of the day politicians need to recognize it’s the users of the patent system that own it and we need to make sure that they get the system that they deserve.

Demonizing monetizers undermines the patent system

Phil Hartstein is the President and CEO of Finjan Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: FNJN)… On January 6, 2015, I interviewed Hartstein, which appears below. We had a wide ranging and lively discussion about the current state of the patent market, how the pejorative use of the term “patent troll” does nothing but attempt to denigrate innovators as second-class patent owners simply because they don’t manufacture, efforts to promote ethical licensing standards, and patent reform.

To patent or not to patent? The market reality for software patents

If you have any software patent that is essentially a software version of a human practice — something that was done in human practice — and you decide to write up a patent, even if you automated it in such a way and did things that the human brain could never do it will be problematic. If you can look at the patent and then make an argument that humans were doing this outside the software realm before you implemented it in software, under Alice, I think you’ve got a big problem.

Creating start-up success in an anti-patent climate

They use early IPOs as an alternative to traditional venture funding. But one of the things that the investors place a huge importance on is a very sophisticated, robust patent operation. So whereas it used to be you’d have a new company and it could take years even to get some sort of sophistication, we’re now doing it on day one. And the results have been great to see. Over the last few months we have filed close to a hundred patent applications for these entities. We’re able to do that because we have been able to negotiate favorable deals with the law firms we use and we can pass that on to the clients. So our goal is to really be creating companies and crafting their portfolios from day one. Essentially, my partner and I work to insource a very sophisticated patent operation for a company that ordinarily wouldn’t have had that capability.

Working toward settlement where reasonably possible

It’s important, particularly for technology companies in fast moving industries, to keep their eyes focused on the future and competing in the marketplace rather than focused on the past and competing in the courtroom, other than in a small number of cases where that focus really is absolutely necessary… When we deal with nonpracticing entities in mediation, we have to take them seriously. They are the parties to the lawsuit. They operate the kinds of businesses that they operate. They take positions and have underlying interests that need to be acknowledged as real and sincere. And the parties opposing the nonpracticing entities have to deal with them straight up and sometimes make some difficult decisions as to whether to settle and how much money to pay.

Helping start-ups turn ideas into valuable assets

The first thing we do is we assess the idea. And when we assess the idea we verify that the idea can lead to the creation of intellectual property. Because for me, if that’s not the outcome, then it’s not an idea worth pursuing. The second thing we’re looking for is merit. So we’re checking: is that a good idea? From my experience of 20 years in Silicon Valley, it all really comes down to the connection between the idea and the founder. Some people are trying to sell somebody else’s ideas. That’s not a good idea.

Exclusive Interview with Doug Croxall of Marathon Patent Group

Doug Croxall is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Marathon Patent Group, which is a patent acquisition and licensing company. I met Croxall in New York City in November 2014 at the IP Dealmakers Forum. Croxall has been successful in the patent monetization business for years and had a unique prospective on patents as an asset. “If you are going invest your family’s fortune, I don’t think you will put all your money in one equity,” Croxall explained on the panel so it is the same thing with respect to an asset or a portfolio of assets.” He would go on to say that Marathon Patent Group has learned from “what worked in other asset areas and applied it to this one.”

Rewriting Patent Law by Judicial Decision – A Conversation with Sherry Knowles

KNOWLES: “We are seeing a strong anti-innovation sentiment in the U.S. not just on the issue of obviousness but also on patent eligibility. We’re seeing a rewriting of patent law through judicial decisions which have draconian effect on the industry that judges have not given full consideration of the larger impact of. And I might go even further to say that judges are not sufficiently trained or authorized to overhaul the patent system through the judiciary. The judiciary is taking over the job of Congress. I think that’s what we are seeing.”

Toward a More Favorable Patent System: European Patent Reform

Sherry Knowles: “If a company identifies a weak patent now, it might file an inter partes review or post grant review at the U.S. Patent Office. Ten years ago I don’t think any of us would have imagined that the best jurisdiction in the world to invalidate a patent would be the United States.”

Exclusive Interview with Jaime Siegel of Acacia Research

Siegel: “I think this effort to destroy the value of intellectual property is a bigger wet towel on innovation. When startup companies, after they get their angel investing, go out to try and raise funds on round Bs and round Cs, one of the things that investors look at is whether or not that company has an innovation that is different and protectable so that the investors know that number one there is something in there that’s protectable so that they can protect their investment. And when companies, small companies that make the investment into intellectual property portfolio development it sends a signal, two signals. It sends a signal that, number one, they’re progressive enough and smart enough to think about protecting their innovation. And, number two, it provides collateral for the investments that the investors are making into the company. So if the company were to not be successful in its business, they would have this asset of an IP portfolio sitting there that could still be sold or otherwise monetized to help the investors recoup their investments.”

The Software Patent Problem: Not Emphasizing the Technological Contribution of the Innovation

LEMLEY: “People have been writing claims that don’t emphasize the technological contribution of the innovation. And I think that’s part of the problem. And I think if we can write claims that really highlight the technological contribution then the Court maybe is going to be inclined to view those differently. And more favorably.”

The Ramifications of Alice: A Conversation with Mark Lemley

LEMLEY: “I think Alice is a real sea change on the patentable subject matter issue. I’ve heard a lot of folks talk about how Alice doesn’t really use the word “software” so it doesn’t really change anything, but I honestly think that’s wishful thinking… I think a lot of patent lawyers had talked ourselves into thinking that the Court didn’t really mean it in Mayo when it talked about having to add a significant inventive component beyond the abstract idea or the natural process. But the court in Alice makes it clear that if your patent covers an implementation of an idea we want proof of an inventive concept beyond that idea before we’ll grant you a patent.

Creating Software Obviously Isn’t Easy – Part 3 with Bob Zeidman

“[F]or a living I reverse engineer code and testify in court. Yet I could not reverse engineer this code. Every time I touched it to make some kind of change to test it, the whole thing broke. And I finally had to write the code completely from scratch because this open source code was such a kludge, such a mess, that it was impossible for me to figure out… [T]here’s a bunch of issues here and maybe some of them are that programmers nowadays aren’t well trained and they’re not well disciplined in programming techniques… [they] write code as quickly as you can, throw it out there, people will debug it for you. So first of all maybe we need to be teaching more discipline to programmers. We need to… convince them, hey, now that you’ve really gone through a rigorous program it’s not just okay to throw stuff together but create something with a structure that’s debuggable, that’s understandable, and that is innovative and patentable.”