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01.17.19

US Patent Lawyers Will Need to Change Profession or End up Becoming Abundantly Redundant, Unemployed

Posted in America, Patents at 6:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Last year: Number of US Patent Lawsuits Was More Than 50% Higher Half a Decade Ago

Patent Lawyers' Tears

Summary: In the age of Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes reviews (IPRs) and 35 U.S.C. § 101 it’s too risky to sue with dodgy patents; moreover, the Federal Circuit‘s growing adoption of Alice means that no recent cases have given hope to patent maximalists and litigation frequency has fallen again (at double-digit rates)

FOR THOSE who still wonder why we don’t write much about the USPTO anymore (we still cover EPO affairs), it’s to do with the decline of patent litigation in the US. It seems to still accelerate though anti-PTAB front groups continue to cherry-pick numbers and pretend that the Office can influence courts; it’s the other way around [1, 2].

“Over the past few years many such shops have shut down or have been taken over/merged. The father of patent trolling died along with his ‘business’ and the world’s biggest troll, Intellectual Ventures, is shedding off ‘assets’.”We’ve taken note of the demise of the litigation capital in Texas and currently the European Patent Office is failing to create an alternative to it in Europe (the UPC is failing). After litigation had already fallen sharply (it used to be a half higher half a decade ago, i.e. around the time of Alice) we learned that as per the “Docket Navigator database on January 14, some 3,600 cases were filed in 2018 – down 11.5%,” as Managing IP put it. It’s pretty clear that the patent litigation ‘industry’ has collapsed in the US. It’s good for people who actually make/innovate stuff; not so good for litigators and trolls. Over the past few years many such shops have shut down or have been taken over/merged. The father of patent trolling died along with his ‘business’ and the world’s biggest troll, Intellectual Ventures, is shedding off ‘assets’. If we don’t cover US patents as much as we did last year, this is why. So far this week Watchtroll has already attacked both SCOTUS and PTAB. It also liaised with IBM for some more software patents propaganda, reaffirming our fears for Red Hat's fate.

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