04.30.17

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“Spectator” and “The Patent Scam” (New Site/Movie) Tackle the Patent Trolls Epidemic

Posted in America, Asia, Patents at 5:11 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The Patent Scam

Summary: The mainstream criticism of patent trolls, culminating even in movies like “The Patent Scam” and others, might be enough to sway public opinion on the subject

FOR a number of months, especially since last year, we have mentioned that Singapore was already attracting a lot of patent trolls. One example was Creative, which made and sold products in the distant past and is now trying to convert almost-expired patents into cash. According to IAM, the Singaporean patent office (IPOS) wants more of the same, as one might expect from an office which wants to justify its operations and is apathetic towards industry (like the EPO, which took this to a whole new level, just like SIPO in China).

“Patent trolls have troubled just about everyone except the patent microcosm, as the patent microcosm profits from them. Team UPC, for example, happily promotes patent trolls. So do publishers like IAM, who even receive cash from patent trolls and organise whitewashing events for them.”Under its current leadership, the USPTO has managed to drive many patent trolls out of business. It’s not a coincidence; the epidemic of patent trolls visibly troubled Director Lee. She spoke about it. No wonder industry supports her, unlike the patent microcosm.

Patent trolls have troubled just about everyone except the patent microcosm, as the patent microcosm profits from them. Team UPC, for example, happily promotes patent trolls. So do publishers like IAM, who even receive cash from patent trolls and organise whitewashing events for them.

Spectator, which is widely read, published the article “Patent Trolls Don’t Care About the Law” a few days ago. This article was promoted by the publisher and by United for Patent Reform [1, 2, 3]. “An ugly cynicism underrides their bottom-feeding efforts to claim patent infringement,” the publisher said in the summary and a comparison is made to scum-sucking fish. See the accompanying photo. Here is a portion from this article:

Defense of today’s patent system can be a difficult job. At its best, the system can encourage innovation, protect the sacred rights of inventors, and do it highly effectively. At its worst, it falls prey to loopholes and day-to-day issues that make it fertile ground for abuse and negligence. Not to mention, it arguably is reliant on one of the least competent regulatory agencies in the entire federal bureaucracy and sometimes seems to provide more protection to trial lawyers, university administrators, and other infamous sucklers at the rent-seeking teat than it does to actual inventors.

Small wonder, then, that those trying to defend the system in an unreconstructed form usually resort to accusing their opponents (falsely) of being against patents, or even intellectual property altogether, as if this is a debate over first principles, rather than what sort of system can best serve those first principles, and how to tweak the current one in pursuit of that.

However, say this for the patent system’s most strident defenders: A good number of them do seem to care deeply about the first principles in law and policy they purport to champion. Sadly, this often fails to ennoble them, rather reducing them to unwitting apologists for people who share none of their deeply held moral, legal, or political views.

Why? Because the people who benefit most unjustly from the present patent system lack principles entirely. I refer to non-practicing entities (NPEs), known colloquially as patent trolls, a group of firms that exist purely to register patents and then accuse actual inventors of violating them, all while demanding that people who actually invented the things they claim to have patented should pay them for the privilege of doing what they were unable or unwilling to do. In other words, this is an industry that makes its money through the sleaziest mix of nuisance lawsuits, legal intimidation, and pervasive disingenuousness.

Patent trolls have thankfully become a widely-recognised issue, but the only downside is that many people lost sight of the problem which is software patents (that trolls tend to rely on).

“Patent trolls have thankfully become a widely-recognised issue, but the only downside is that many people lost sight of the problem which is software patents (that trolls tend to rely on).”There is a new site/movie called “The Patent Scam”. “Come watch a screening of the patent scam and join a policy discussion on patent trolls,” said a promotion from Engine, “hosted by Julie Samuels.” (its President; slightly modified quote).

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