06.28.15

PATENT Act No Longer in the News… and That’s Just Fine

Posted in Patents at 2:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Putting the PATENT Act aside for the time being, for it has little or no impact on the really problematic patents

Whether one calls it Innovation/Invent/Invention/Awesome/BEST Act or just PATENT Act, the latest branding incarnation [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] (whatever buzzword one chooses does not say anything about the substance), in practice there is very limited a reform. It has been systematically watered down, as some experts have already pointed out, to the point of being meaningful and beneficial only to few very large corporations with legions of lobbyists in Washington. Interestingly enough, it is completely absent from the news right now. Not that it matters so much…

“We are likely to hear a lot about ‘reform’ and the so-called PATENT Act in the coming month (it’s not in the news, albeit still on the agenda), but nothing substantial will change as a result.”An article by Mike Masnick speaks of patent reform as it relates to so-called ‘free markets’. “A modest attempt at patent reform,” he wrote, “(mainly targeting egregious patent trolling practices) is making its way through Congress these days at the usual glacial pace. However, even if it does eventually make it through, there is still a tremendous amount left to do on patent reform. Derek Khanna, who famously wrote the wonderful House Republican Study Committee report urging major copyright reform — which so upset Hollywood that favors were called in to get the entire report retracted and cost Khanna his job, has now tried to write a similar report on patent reform. This one is for Lincoln Labs — a think tank trying to present more free market/libertarian ideas into the technology policy arena.”

We are likely to hear a lot about ‘reform’ and the so-called PATENT Act in the coming month (it’s not in the news, albeit still on the agenda), but nothing substantial will change as a result. In the coming few posts we will deal with the real reform that comes from key rulings at the courts, gradually weakening software patents. There is plenty of good news these days.

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