Newsletters

Two Patent Bills Are Reported Out of Committee in June

Two separate patent bills – one in the Senate and one in the House of Representatives – were reported out of committee this month and will be sent to the floor for a vote. These are both “patent” bills because they deal with changes in patent law, but neither is “patent reform” since both bills are the product of lobbyists for Big Tech and are designed to make it riskier and more expensive for inventors, small and start-up businesses, universities and patent licensing companies to assert their intellectual property rights.

Yet Another Patent Bill Is Introduced in Congress

The year began with the re-introduction of the Innovation Act (H.R. 9), a do-over of the same bill that passed in the House two years ago, but failed in the senate. As we wrote in the January Wealth of Ideas feature article, “The Re-Introduced Innovation Act Has Nothing to Do with Innovation,” this bill was crafted by lobbyists for Big Tech, and funded primarily by Google, in an attempt to weaken U.S. Patents and the American patent system.

At Last, a Patent Reform Bill that Makes Sense

It received very little fanfare when it was introduced last year, but the TROL (Targeting Rogue and Opaque Letters) Act of 2014 just came out of subcommittee as we go to press. Formulated in the Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade Subcommittee of the House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee, this bill focuses on the true “patent trolls,” the companies that send out hundreds or thousands of letters to small businesses demanding payment for alleged infringement of a patent or patents which are often not clearly defined.

Opposition to the Innovation Act Continues to Build

Last month, we covered the re-introduction of the Innovation Act. It was H.R. 3309 when it was introduced two years ago. The current bill is H.R. 9, and they are virtually identical.

The Re-Introduced Innovation Act Has Nothing to Do with “Innovation”

The Innovation Act (H.R. 9) was recently re-introduced in the House of Representatives. While the bill has an appealing name, the reality is that it has nothing to do with “innovation” and everything to do with limiting the intellectual property rights of individual inventors, small and start-up businesses, universities and other patentees.

Record Numbers and Reduced Pendency at the Patent Office in 2014

The data is in from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for Fiscal 2014, and the conclusion most would reach is that innovation is alive and well in the U.S., but we still face challenges in an intensely competitive, global economy. As a federal agency, the Patent Office operates on an October-through-September fiscal year, so all of these statistics are for the October 1, 2013-through-September 30, 2014 period.

Integrating Intellectual Property into Your Corporate Marketing Plan - Part Two

November and December are often the time of year when businesses put together their marketing plans for the coming new year, so our November and December feature articles addressed how to incorporate intellectual property – most especially your company’s patents, but also trademarks, service marks and copyrights – into your marketing to best leverage the value of these key assets.  

Integrating Intellectual Property into Your Corporate Marketing Plan - Part One

It is the time of year when many businesses are putting together their marketing plans for the coming year, but many businesses fail to integrate a key corporate asset – intellectual property – into their marketing plans. Intellectual property is unique among all corporate assets because it is one of the few assets that cannot be duplicated by the competition. 

What Would Genuine, No-Kidding-Around, Patent Reform Include?

Over the past few years, there have been numerous attempts at “patent reform,” but the reality is that these were really attempts to weaken the ability of patentees – especially non-practicing entities (NPEs) or patent trolls – to enforce their patent rights. Fortunately, most of these legislative attempts failed.

Copyright Lawsuit Filed by The Turtles Could Have Sirius Implications

When Danny and the Juniors sang “Rock and Roll Is Here to Stay,” they had no idea how prophetic their lyrics were. Many AM and FM stations around the country offer Oldies formats, and Sirius XM, the satellite radio provider, has several channels dedicated to Oldies. 

SiriusXM’s cost of doing business may go up as a result of a class action lawsuit claiming that SiriusXM has infringed the copyrights of older recordings from thousands of artists. Damages are alleged to be at least $100 million, but the plaintiff’s attorneys believe that estimate is on the considerably low side.