Bonum Certa Men Certa

Patently-O is Still Trying to Derail Patent Reform in the United States

Trolly-O Patently-O



Summary: A look at the past week's posts from Patently-O reveals a blog whose tone shifts strongly against patent sanity and instead leans towards the patent 'industry'

A LOT of people regard Patently-O as/to be the "best" patent blog and many also consider it to be objective and balanced. We dispute that in view/light of recent posts from Patently-O, which were not only hostile towards PTAB (especially over the past half a year) but also friendly to patent trolls and apathetic at best towards USPTO patent quality. Using scholarly/academic veneer, Patently-O serves to reinforce patent extremism in the same way that some right-wing "news" sites embolden or reinforce white supremacy. The same cannot be said about other academics, who are mostly pro-patent reform (we've named many over the years).



"Using scholarly/academic veneer, Patently-O serves to reinforce patent extremism in the same way that some right-wing "news" sites embolden or reinforce white supremacy."The main writer at Patently-O is Dennis Crouch, who regularly attends events of the patent microcosm. According to him, Trump and his swamp might soon be defunding USPTO to have it run like a business rather than a service. We have not seen this suggestion anywhere else, so maybe it's an expression of a wish rather than a reality. Do we need another 'Battistelli' at the USPTO? To quote Crouch:

And, an interesting feature of the 2018 Republican House Proposed Budget is shrink the Department of Commerce – currently “rife with waste, abuse, and duplication,” and “Establish the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as an independent agency.”


It is already independent enough as it is. Decoupling it would make things even worse. Crouch already contributed -- along with Watchtroll and IAM -- to driving Michelle Lee out. Does he want to exacerbate things even further? Probably. Yesterday he even advertised IAM.

The more dysfunctional things get, the lower patent quality will get and thus more lawsuits -- something which these people profit from. From chaos comes order? No, to them, from chaos comes income/funding. It's rather appalling.

"The more dysfunctional things get, the lower patent quality will get and thus more lawsuits -- something which these people profit from."The patent 'industry' likes to pretend that Alice is ambiguous (or not sufficiently clear) because these people simply refuse to accept reality. No software patents are tolerated by high courts anymore and Dennis Crouch is nowadays participating in immature caricatures that bash Alice. Where it says "patent industry" it actually alludes not to a real industry but a predator/parasite which sends legal threats. Actually, Alice helped a great deal and brought benefits to the real industry. Why don't they get it? Why can't they just move on? They have been trying to take a Supreme Court's decision down for nearly four years now.

According to another new post, Dennis Crouch would even side with patent trolls if he perceived it as an opportunity to help software patents. To quote:

A new amicus brief supports RPost petition for writ of certiorari – arguing that lack-of-eligibility is not a proper defense to patentability. The brief has an interesting quote from P.J. Federico (co-author of the 1952 Patent Act) suggesting (by omission) that eligibility is not a litigation defense.


Is this encouraged as another anti-Alice 'trick'?

Either way, Patently-O seems to be getting less and less objective by the week. We have been following the blog for years and can tell the difference.

The other day it wrote about "Lost Profits", which is a loaded term which presumes entitlement to profit. This is how rich people typically think and Dennis Crouch, a rich person himself, put it like this:



Lost Profits: Like definiteness, lost profit award also requires “reasonable certainty.” In the lost profit context, the rule is applied in a more-standard approach. Namely, reasonable certainty is traditionally thought of as a standard of evidentiary proof needed for factual conclusions. This makes sense in the fact-heavy damages context but not so much in the indefiniteness arena that is very often seen as wholly a question of law.

Here, the appellate court held that lost profits due to the infringement were not proven because the district court did not consider whether a non-infringing alternative would have been an acceptable/available substitute to the patentee’s product. A new trial is necessary now to calculate the reasonable royalty damages that will presumably be less than the $2 million lost profit verdict overturned on appeal.


Last but not least (from the past week), Crouch spotted something in the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) which cites a case from 70 years ago. To quote: "At the point of Novelty: An interesting bit of the opinion harkens back to the Supreme Court’s 1946 Halliburton decision – holding that functional claim language is particularly problematic when done at the point of novelty. Here, the court does not cite Halliburton but does note that the “asserted advance over the prior art” is the particular layered arrangement of the device, not “the choices of materials to perform each of the required catalytic processes.” Rather, those materials were expected to be ones already well known in the industry.

"Here, of course, the Federal Circuit is not suggesting that Halliburton is good law, but the court does implicitly conclude that there are important distinctions in the indefiniteness analysis when considering terms directed to well-known versus novel features."

"It's possible to be courteous and hold terrible views at the same time; these things aren't contradictory."The Federal Circuit (CAFC) is very different nowadays. We've commended the new chief judge, who is preceded by at least two patent maximalists who left a legacy of mischief if not corruption (Rader). They supported patent trolls, software patents, and much worse. The Supreme Court is nowadays overturning many of these decisions.

We certainly hope that the Supreme Court will set the law (de facto/caselaw) instead of the old CAFC, which was good for nobody except the patent microcosm and people like Crouch.

Truth be told, the legal 'industry' is imploding in the US as far as patents go. There's less demand for it. That's how it should be. Expect blogs like Patently-O to moan and bemoan the status quo. Crouch may do this politely and professionally, but his views will still be rubbish. It's possible to be courteous and hold terrible views at the same time; these things aren't contradictory.

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