A Look Forward on Patent Reform
October 3rd, 2017
Our nation’s patent system has been in need of serious reform for many years. So-called “patent trolls” — entities that don’t actually make or sell anything but that instead buy patent licenses merely to extort settlements — have become a serious drain on our economy. According to one study, patent trolls and their frivolous lawsuits cost our country nearly $80 billion per year.
IPR Successes: Realtors Association Defends Its Members Using IPR
September 29th, 2017
When you buy a house, it’s nice to know where the local schools are, where the closest park is, where a nearby grocery is. So realtors commonly embed tools on their websites to show you a map of these “points of interest” in the area around a house for sale. Unsurprisingly, using technology leads to non-practicing entities suing the realtors. In this case, a pair of Texas-based realtors.
America’s Top Innovators and Main Street Businesses Welcome Announcement of New PTO Director
August 28th, 2017
The industry trade associations, hundreds of small and medium-sized businesses, and innovative companies who hold thousands of patents, welcomed the news that the White House has chosen a new Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Andrei Iancu, a widely-respected patent litigator, has been chosen to fill this important role.
EFF Wins Court Ruling Upholding Invalidation of Bad Patent That Threatened Podcasters
August 7th, 2017
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) won a court ruling today affirming that an infamous podcasting patent used by a patent troll to threaten podcasters big and small was properly held invalid by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). A unanimous decision by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit will, for now, keep podcasting safe from this patent.
The PTO’s § 101 Summary Report
August 3rd, 2017
One of the most important developments over the past few years is the Supreme Court’s decision in Alice v. CLS Bank – a decision that articulated a distinction between patent-eligible inventions, and patent-ineligible abstract ideas. The Alice decision has enabled many companies, including small businesses, to defend themselves from baseless patent infringement lawsuits based on patents on abstract ideas.