Posts Tagged: "Ron Katznelson"

Amici Cite Relevance of GAO Report, Empirical Data, to Back New Vision’s Claim that AIA Review Structure Violates Due Process

Inventor organization US Inventor (USI) and Ron Katznelson—the author of a widely cited study detailing the link between Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) judges’ decisions and their compensation—have filed separate amicus briefs supporting New Vision Gaming and Development, Inc. in its most recent appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC). New Vision is arguing that America Invents Act (AIA) trials violate the Due Process Clause and that the recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) Report documenting how U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and PTAB management control influences Administrative Patent Judges’ (APJ) decision making bolsters its previous arguments and warrants a new appeal. While USI’s brief expands upon this argument, Katznelson’s provides both old and new data that he says proves a “structural bias” exists.

Webinar: Holding the USPTO Accountable in District Court – Why the Underutilized 145 Action is a Smart Choice for Patent Applicants – Sponsored By Triangle IP

Section 145 of the Patent Act authorizes patent applicants to bring suit against the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in district court following a loss at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). Under Section 145, patent applicants can present new evidence that was not suitable in a Patent Office appeal, including expert testimony. A 145 action can…

Federal Circuit Denies Mandamus in Due Process Violations Case Against Big Tech Companies

The CAFC on Friday, February 11, denied a petition for writ of mandamus filed by B.E. Technology in November of last year asking the court to intervene to “prevent an unconstitutional deprivation of B.E.’s property rights in the onslaught of IPR proceedings that have been brought to challenge the validity of its most critical patents.” B.E. has been embroiled in litigation with big tech companies like Facebook, Twitter and Google for close to a decade now. The CAFC said in its denial that “B.E. has not shown a clear right to a different result here by relying primarily on a self-published article that is outside of the record.”

Have We Gone Too Far to Eradicate Weak Patents?

Asking whether the industry has gone too far to eradicate weak patents misses the point entirely, and to some extent will allow those who want the patent system to continue its march off the cliff to inappropriately claim the moral high ground. Regardless of how you prefer to characterize problem patents, whether it be as weak, bad, low quality, or invalid, no one wants those problematic patents to issue or be used to harass individuals or businesses as they sometimes have been used by bad actors. But that begs the real question. In an attempt to eradicate the system from those problematic patents have things gotten out of control and, thereby caused collateral damage in an indiscriminate way to all patents, including high quality, strong patents? To that question the answer must be a resounding yes!

Will Congress Succumb to the Sirens’ Song and Take-Over the Judiciary’s Case Management Role in Patent Litigation?

A troubling fundamental aspect of the proposed mandatory stay is that it would chip away at the quid pro quo of the patent bargain. To ensure the Constitutionally-protected exclusive right, patent rights have long been recognized as covering multiple and independent separate causes of action: “whoever without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention, within the United States or imports into the United States any patented invention during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the patent.” 35 U.S.C. § 271(a) (emphasis added). Strict liability attaches to each one of these forms of infringement independently of the others. These are separate violations, any one of which being subject to injunctive relief “to prevent the violation of any right secured by patent.” 35 U.S.C. § 283.

The America Invents Act at Work – The Major Cause for the Recent Rise in Patent Litigation

It is ironic and highly likely that the AIA – the legislation touted by its proponents as the instrument to reduce the number of costly patent lawsuits – is in fact the major cause for their increase in the last three years.
Several factors created by the AIA caused, and will continue to cause, increased rate of lawsuit filings. As this graph shows, filings during 2009 – the last year before the onset of the surge shown in Gene’s article – patents that were 1-5 years old were most frequently the subject of an infringement lawsuit. In contrast, filings in 2012 were dominated by newly issued patents at an unprecedented factor of two compared to any other patent age category. The only plausible explanation to this change that comes to mind is based on the relationship between Federal court actions and the AIA-created administrative proceedings of Inter Partes Review (IPR), Post Grant Review (PGR), and the Transitional Program for Covered Business Method Patents (TPCB), which is governed by PGR rules.

Here they go again – this time with the Patent SHIELD Act

Indeed, the bill’s co-sponsor acknowledges and states “[t]his bill combats the problem of patent trolls by moving to a ‘loser pays’ system for software and hardware patent litigation.” However, the bill’s sponsors fail to explain what makes the frequency, risk, or social harm of “egregious” patent lawsuits any different than those of other “egregious” civil suits in America so as to single out patent right enforcement for a special treatment under civil law. In fact, the following graph shows that in the last four decades the number of patent lawsuits filed per year has risen at slower pace than other IP lawsuits or when compared to all Federal civil suits. Patent lawsuits now constitute a little over 1% of all Federal civil suits – the same fraction as that in the mid 1970’s.

Industry Insiders Make Patent Wishes for 2012

It is that time of the year where we all start to look ahead to the new year, perhaps making some New Year resolutions that are sure to last for at least a few days. Resurrecting something done two years ago, I once again contacted some of my friends to get them to go on the record with their patent and innovation related wishes for 2012. I was lucky enough to get a number of very thoughtful responses from individuals with a variety of experiences.

A Special Thank You to Our Guest Contributors!

Over the years IPWatchdog.com has continued to try and add additional perspectives from a wide variety of guest contributors, ranging from well respected practicing attorneys and agents to high profile academics to inventors and pro-patent lobbyists. It is hard to imagine providing such depth of analysis on such an array of topics without having truly wonderful guest authors. So we take this moment to say a very special thank you and to shine the spotlight on them. Each deserve to share in any recognition of IPWatchdog.com. Without further ado, here are the guest contributors in alphabetical order, along with their contributions for 2011.

Rebuttal Finale: A Response to Lemley’s Myth of the Sole Inventor

Lemley’s response introduces the new term “sequential improvement.” This suggests to us that he has now abandoned many of his claims of “simultaneous invention.” The word ‘sequential’ does not occur a single time in his article. We agree with Lemley’s new description that invention and innovation are often sequential, building in a series of related but different inventions: it is a normal feature of development and does not require a 108 page and 260 footnote article to establish it. Nor does it have radical policy consequences for the patent system which is well-adapted to this feature of real invention. But Lemley’s recommended policy would deny patents to second comers who contribute the key missing ingredient that unlocks an entire field. To Lemley’s credit, he recognizes the benefits of patent races and that the patent system leads to more innovation. But if that is true, Lemley does not explain why the patent system that we actually have is broken. His proposal to deny patents on “the most important inventions” and not grant more patents seems to flow from unreliable scholarship rather than a precise, reliable diagnosis of a problem.

Lemley Responds: Defending the Myth of the Sole Inventor

If you actually read my article you will find that I simply don’t say the things they claim I say. The basic refrain of the Howells-Katznelson paper is that (1) I think Edison and the Wright brothers didn’t make inventive contributions, and (2) I diminish their contributions in service of my “radical” anti-patent agenda. With all due respect, I don’t see how anyone who read the whole paper could think I said any such thing. There is no question that Edison and the Wrights made useful contributions to the world. The point of my article is that they (and the many other iconic inventors I discuss) did not act alone. They made important but incremental contributions on the shoulders of many other inventors advancing the technology, and they often did so at about the same time as other, lesser-known inventors.

A Critique of Mark Lemley’s “The Myth of the Sole Inventor”

For example, regarding Thomas Edison, Lemley’s primary case illustrating the so-called “myth of the sole inventor,” he alleges that “Sawyer and Man invented and patented the incandescent light bulb” (Lemley 2011, p26) and that “Edison did not invent the light bulb in any meaningful sense” (Lemley 2011, p25). We disprove Lemley’s assertions and present five key facts that Lemley omits: for example, although Lemley cites a Supreme Court case in 1895 as a source for the statement above, he neglects to inform us of the decision reported in that case; it affirmed a lower court’s 1889 decision in favor of Edison and finding the Sawyer & Man patent invalid. Furthermore, the Sawyer and Man lamps were not commercially viable, having only a few hours life, whereas Edison’s invention was the basis for a lamp with a hundred times longer useful lifetime: electric lighting became economic and it was Edison’s invention that unlocked the field after three decades of experimentation by others in incandescent lamps. There was no candidate for an invention simultaneous with Edison’s invention.

The America Invents Act’s Repeal of Secret Commercial Use Bar is Constitutionally Infirm

The effort to shoehorn foreign patent priority concepts and torture a well-developed 200 year-old American patent system that has a proven record as the best in the world into foreign structures that are inconsistent with the American Constitution and its laws is a futile effort that would likely be met with successful challenge on constitutional grounds. The illusory “harmonization” goal with no demonstrated tangible benefits compared to the existing system does not justify embarking on a risky legal adventure that will destabilize the American patent system and will doom it to decades of economically taxing legal uncertainty.

Amici Support i4i at Supreme Court in Microsoft Patent Case

What becomes clear in reading these briefs (and the excerpts below) is that despite what you might have heard to the contrary the Supreme Court has already previously addressed this issue and has done so in support of a standard appreciably higher than the mere preponderance supported by Microsoft. The argument of those in support of Microsoft has been that at least some Circuit Courts of Appeal had a lower presumption of validity prior to when the Federal Circuit announced the clear and convincing standard of proof and thereby settled patent law. While that may be true it seems abundantly clear that law setting a preponderance standard was directly in conflict with the clear and unambiguous Supreme Court precedent directly on point. In fact, there is even Supreme Court precedent directly on point saying that more than a mere preponderance is necessary even when the prior art has not been previously considered. So perhaps i4i and the amici, including the U.S. government by and through the Solicitor General and the USPTO General Counsel Bernie Knight can convince the Supreme Court not to overrule its own prior decisions and keep an appropriately high standard.

IPWatchdog 2010: ABA Blawg Tops + Over 2 Million Visits

I am pleased to announce that IPWatchdog.com was selected by the readers of the ABA Journal as their favorite IP Law blog for 2010 ABA. I am also pleased to announce that for 2010 we had over 2,000,000 visits, delivered nearly 11.8 million pages, our homepage was viewed 3.06 million times and we averaged over 67,000 unique monthly visitors! Thanks to all our readers for coming back day after day, and thanks to all of our Guest Contributors!