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Posts Tagged: "Silicon Valley"

Emerging Market and Legal Trends in the Top Five Global Startup Ecosystems

The recently published Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2020 ranks the top global startup ecosystems by metrics including performance, funding, connectedness, talent, and knowledge to highlight the winning startup cities worldwide. In a league of their own, this year’s top five global startup ecosystems have a combined value of $1.5 trillion, 1.7 times the remaining top ecosystems. Silicon Valley maintains the #1 ranking, a position it has held since 2012, when rankings were first released. Meanwhile, New York remains at #2, although now tied with London. And finally, Beijing is at #4, and Boston is at #5. Tel-Aviv and Los Angeles rounded out the top seven. The 2020 analysis includes almost 300 ecosystems, up from 60 in 2018 and 150 in 2019. It ranks the top 40 global startup ecosystems and 100 emerging startup ecosystems.

Predicting the Post-COVID Economy: How Companies and IP Departments Should Prepare for the New Normal

The first half of 2020 has brought so much upheaval and disruption that it is almost hard to contemplate. In the future, there will be entire treatises and dissertations in a variety of fields of study that seek to understand the socioeconomic, psychological and inter-personal dynamics brought to bear. For now, individuals, families, business leaders, government officials— everyone really—are left to figure out what is next in this ever-changing landscape before us, which in the United States has become even more complicated by domestic unrest in virtually every major city. As states are opening up slowly, many businesses— of all sizes really— remain cautious.  Plans to return to pre-COVID normal are being discussed, but how can you, for example, get employees into the office when the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to recommend social distancing of at least six feet? With many offices being in high-rise buildings and elevators being only so large, the logistics of getting staff into and out of the office safely are daunting, let alone the reality that there is no plan for social distancing when using mass transit, for example.

Chief Judge Paul Michel: Patent Reform Progress is Likely, But We Must Stay Focused On the Big Picture

Last week during IPWatchdog’s Patent Masters Symposium, former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Paul Michel sat down with me to discuss the state of the U.S. patent system and best options/ predictions for moving forward. He began by lamenting that “the courts have failed and failed and failed” with flawed rulings such as Helsinn v. Teva, which Michel characterized as “completely illogical”, and Impression Products, Inc. v. Lexmark International, Inc. To boot, the Supreme Court has refused to take any patent eligibility cases, and the Federal Circuit has managed to make the harm and illogic of the SCOTUS rulings even worse, Michel said. In fact, they’ve “expanded on the bad rulings of the SCOTUS.” Part of the problem may lie in a misunderstanding of the true intent of the patent system, according to Michel. “The real point of the patent system is to incentivize innovation, not to encourage creative people. Creative people will create no matter what. Investment is extremely risky and costly—if the incentive to invest shrinks, and there is evidence that it has, we are in trouble.” Below, Michel offers more of his thoughts on the current patent landscape, including what to expect from pending legislation and why he is cautiously optimistic that change is coming soon.

Separating Fact from Fiction in United States v. Levandowski

In August, the United States Attorney’s Office (USAO) for the Northern District of California charged a pioneer of self-driving car technology, Anthony Levandowski, with 33 counts of theft and attempted theft of trade secrets from Google under 18 U.S.C. § 1832 of the Economic Espionage Act (EEA). According to the indictment, Levandowski downloaded more than 14,000 files containing critical information about Google’s autonomous-vehicle research before leaving the company in 2016. The indictment alleged that Levandowski then made an unauthorized transfer of the files to his personal laptop. Some of the files that Levandowski allegedly took from Google included private schematics for proprietary circuit boards and designs for light sensor technology, known as Lidar, which are used in self-driving cars. Levandowski joined Uber in 2016 after leaving Google when Uber bought his new self-driving trucking start-up, “Otto.” Levandowski has repeatedly asserted that he never disclosed the download, nor made use of the information while he was at Uber.

President Donald Trump Should Investigate the Corrupt Patent System and Passage of the AIA

I am Emil Malak, CEO of VoIP-Pal.com Inc., and a named inventor on two U.S. patents–Mobile Gateway: US 8,630,234 & Electrostatic Desalinization and Water Purification: US 8,016,993. To date, our company owns 22 issued and or allowed patents, which we developed over the past 15 years. Against all odds, we have been 100% successful in defending eight Inter Partes Reviews (IPRs): four from Apple, three from AT&T, and one from Unified Patents. We are presently in litigation against Apple, Verizon, AT&T, Twitter and Amazon. My experience with Voip-Pal has made it painfully clear that the deck has been stacked against companies who own IP being used without license by large tech companies. The America Invents Act (AIA), orchestrated by Silicon Valley, was designed to destroy the very ladder they climbed to ascend to their lofty perch, and make certain that they could not be challenged.

More Dreck on Patent Trolls from Attorneys Cozying Up to Silicon Valley

Principe and Rudroff unfortunately regurgitate much of the misguided dialogue, which has done nothing to serve this country except to decimate its patent system in recent years. In the view of the authors, patent trolls, or patent assertion entities (PAEs) (which the authors note is the less pejorative term), provide no market value and often enforce software or business method patents which have questionable validity. Of course, it is worth noting that in its 2016 study on PAEs, the Obama Federal Trade Commission called the term “patent troll” both unhelpful and prejudicial, and also specifically recognized that PAEs can and do play a valuable role in the market. So the conclusions of Principe and Rudroff are not supported by even an FTC study commissioned for the purpose of condemning patent trolls. 

Has Big Tech Finally Become Too Big for the FTC to Ignore?

Some of the questions the FTC is interested in investigating and discussing during this inquiry include whether changes in the economy and evolving businesses have created competition and consumer protection issues in communication and information technology networks, market power and entry barriers in markets featuring “platform” businesses, the role of intellectual property in competition, and a variety of issues surrounding the security and use of big data… With networks, market power, platforms, intellectual property and big data being the focal point of the FTC inquiry, there is little doubt that the big tech giants of Silicon Valley are the targets of this FTC competition review. For those in innovator community the feeling will no doubt be that such a government inquiry is long overdue.

Invention and Patents: Phyllis Schlafly’s Legacy

In addition to these other areas of policy interest, however, Phyllis Schlafly had a strong and enduring interest in issues relating to invention, patents and other forms of intellectual property (including copyrights).  These intellectual property and innovation issues were very important to her and fundamentally underpinned her views on why America was a great, successful (and unique) country. The importance of the American system of invention and patents was a theme that she returned to again and again over the years.

The Petri Dish Effect will keep Technology in China for Generations

Wealth in Silicon Valley created and then funded more startups, and the cycle continued. It was like a petri dish, only with a multiplication of startups instead of cells. Today, the petri dish effect will have long term negative consequences for the U.S. as China is capturing technologies that once were controlled by American companies and spinning up massive numbers of startups in these fields.

Intellectual Property Plays a Big Role in Silicon Valley Deals

How big of a role does IP play in Silicon Valley deals? “In almost any size transaction involving a technology company, our client asks us to look carefully at the company’s IP and the agreements the company has entered into with third parties to secure rights in IP and to permit others to use that IP,” said John Brockland, a technology and IP transactions partner at Hogan Lovells. “Depending on how a transaction is structured, the terms on which IP is assigned or licensed between the parties in a deal can also be a critical area of focus for our client.”

Following the money trail from Mapbox to the Kushners and Trump Administration

There are clearly many thousands of companies both large and small with far greater experience and in a far better position to advise Congress on the issue of patent reform. So why Mapbox? As is so frequently the case whenever business and politics intersect, follow the money! We have done just that and we’ve found that a no-name, no-experience company like Mapbox, without any patent applications and no patent litigation experience became thrust into the public debate over patents because all the money people behind Mapbox are card carrying members of the anti-patent efficient infringer lobby.

Are Corporate Employees Protected by the First Amendment?

As it related to the Google incident, it was first reported that a memo authored by a Google employee, titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber”, was being circulated among Google employees. Later that day, the memo was obtained by the media and made public. The memo’s author was identified in the press as a senior employee named James Damore. In the memo, Damore criticized the efforts of tech companies, Google included, to employ programs and hiring practices concentrating on diversity. Specifically, Damore was critical of tech company initiatives which had the goal of recruiting and employing female engineers.

Theftovation: Facebook ‘Likes’ Copying Ideas

The Wall Street Journal explains ithat the Silicon Valley culture has long regarded copying as a good thing and necessary for rapid growth, first to market, first mover advantage, network effects, world domination, liquidity for early investors and Founders, etc. What complete and total garbage. When you live in a culture that tolerates and even promotes copying that is, in fact, what you get. When everyone copies everyone that means no one is innovating. Many studies and articles in recent years have highlighted how we have a net loss of startups over the past 30 years and that companies are no longer innovating.

Inspiration vs. Copying: Where’s the Line in Hollywood?

When it comes to television shows, it not always clear what is “copyrightable.” Sometimes, filmmakers and screen writers can get into serious trouble if they don’t follow specific television copyright laws accordingly. Austin-based filmmaker Lex Lybrand watched the June 4th episode of the hit HBO series “Silicon Valley” to shockingly find strong similarities between the episode “The Patent Troll” and his own film “The Trolls.” Jed Wakefield of Fenwick & West recently sat down with IPWatchdog to discuss Lybrand’s case and the impact of copyright infringement when it comes to movie scripts.

Myopia in the C-Suite is Wrecking America’s Patent System

Few Chief Executives are really stewards of their corporations as if the corporate entity will live past 3 to 5 years, which is why so many in Silicon Valley, for example, have spent so many millions lobbying to destroy the American patent system at a time when virtually the entire rest of the world is doing the exact opposite. Unwilling, or perhaps unable, to devise a strategy to deal with frivolous lawsuits these shortsighted Chieftains have taken aim at the U.S. patent system, and at the same time taken aim at their own substantial patent holdings that were acquired for important business reasons — business reasons they obviously do not comprehend or they would be making very different decisions and taking a very different approach.