Bonum Certa Men Certa

Shawn Ambwani (Unified Patents) Refutes the US Chamber of Commerce on Patents, But the Patent Trolls' Lobby (IAM) Uses Him to Trot Out Yet More Misleading Propaganda

Having run out of factual/legitimate arguments, they nowadays resort to nutty conspiracy theories about Google

IAM logo and friends



Summary: Coming to grips with the strengthening of patents (quality) in the United States, those who rely on low-quality patents for blackmail purposes fire back at opponents of patent trolls and some persist with the crazy conspiracy theory that claims "Google" is behind everything

THE SCOTUS-complying USPTO will have to narrow down patent scope or risk being repeatedly embarrassed by the Federal Circuit (for having granted patents in error, reducing confidence in US patents).

Unified Patents, which we support, keeps demonstrating that some notorious US patents (used extensively for litigation or shakedown) are in fact bogus patents. It has just happened again to Roaring Brook Advisors, which certainly looks like a patent troll to Unified Patents. There was a bounty (they now offer those) and here's the outcome:

Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Rohit Sood, who received a cash prize of $2000 for his prior art submission for U.S. Patent 6,909,359, allegedly owned by Roaring Brook Advisors, LLC, a suspected NPE. The '359 patent generally relates to a medical notification device that may be worn as a wristwatch. To help the industry fight bad patents, we have published the winning prior art below.


The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) came to the rescue yet again, combating bad patents of Silver State Intellectual Technologies. To quote Jain:

On June 8, 2018 the Board granted Silver State Intellectual Technologies' request for adverse judgment and cancellation of all challenged claims in IPR2017-01198 filed by Unified Patents. This request comes after the PTAB's decision to institute trial (and mere weeks before the Board's anticipated final decision) on all claims of US 8,538,498 directed to an information and control system for use in a vehicle capable of communicating with remote servers through a communications network.


As one might expect, Unified Patents has come under attack from patent extremists who are connected to trolls. We gave some examples of these attacks before. It certainly seems like patent quality is a scary concept to some people and Unified Patents is a convenient 'whipping boy'.

Recently, the patent trolls' lobby (IAM) worked hard to deny and discredit a study from IP2Innovate, refusing to accept the simple fact that patent trolls are a growing problem in Europe. IAM is IP2Litigate. This is basically IAM's job; they're the voice of patent trolls. Recently came a 'study' they could actually embrace, not because it was rooted in facts but because the message suited the bogus narrative trotted out by the litigation 'industry'. These patent maximalists were just trying to improve their profits by lying to officials with a bogus 'ladder' that IAM would soon boost along with Watchtroll and even Iancu himself.

Something a little surprising happened yesterday because on the face of it IAM permitted a refutation by Unified Patents' Shawn Ambwani. "The authors of a much-quoted ranking that records a big drop in the standing of the US patent system have serious questions to answer about their methodology," said the tweet. Sounds promising, right?

Patent maximalist Richard Lloyd precedes Unified Patents' views with the usual nonsense. He dismisses this by promoting the controversial 'study' and attacking others' studies, like one about patent trolls in Europe (IP2Innovate). This is how Lloyd writes, in essence attacking the very text he's about to copy-paste:

In recent years much has been written and spoken about the relative decline of the US patent system recorded by the Global Innovation Policy Center’s “IP Index”. While in IP generally, the Index states that the US remains in number one place overall, its patent score has slipped. Last year the US lost its number one ranking, falling to 10th, level with Hungary. This year, while the US patent score went up, it still slipped two places.

The centre is an affiliate of the US Chamber of Commerce and its analysis of the American patent system has been seized on by various members of the patent community who are highly critical of recent changes introduced by both the courts and Congress. But should the index be relied on as an accurate measure of relative global standing?

We have been highly critical of how data has been used and abused with regard to patents in both the US and elsewhere over the years. For example, decidely dodgy claims have been made about the activities of NPEs over the years to justify patent reform in the US - something that is now spreading to Europe. Patents are a subject that legislators know little about and because of that the way data is presented really matters.Given how important innovation policy is, decsions have to be based on reality not on spin. And that applies to all sides in the argument.

According to Unified Patents’ Shawn Ambwani and Jonathan Stroud there are serious question marks over the methodology used by ththose who compile the rankings. These, they say, should be addressed before the index is used by anyone to advocate for a particular position.


How many people will ever read further? Lloyd just used this as an opportunity for lobbying, which is basically what he does in the US (under the guise of "journalism").

"Shawn Ambwani is chief operating officer and Jonathan Stroud is chief IP counsel at Unified Patents," it says at the bottom, but many paragraphs at the top are the lobbyists' own.

Here's what Ambwani said (excerpt):

The index also lacks context. The GIPIC starts its analysis by asking: “Does a given economy’s intellectual property system provide a reliable basis for investment in the innovation and creativity lifecycle?” But it never addresses or defines those terms; if innovation, investment and economic benefit aren’t defined in the index, how are they measured?

The report ostensibly spends substantial effort developing methodology and scoring to compare countries based on self-selected “baselines” on the pro-enforcement policies of the GIPC, but it does not show how its scoring correlates to or reflects “investment in the innovation and creativity lifecycle”. There is no suggestion, much less proof, that the US economy has suffered at all, much less at the hands of patent policies. There is also no evidence connecting the eight indicators to historical “investment”. The correlation between IP enforcement to economic benefit for US companies or the US economy (absent equal detriment to other US companies) have yet to be shown by any quantitative measurement.

Until innovation can be demonstrably related to the scores in the index, it remains little more than a transparent lobbyist’s tool. The first step toward repairing credibility would be to demonstrate that the scores affect innovation before trying to measure them for the future; that is, unless the purpose of the index is really just to provide talking points to lobbyists and policy hawks to support the ease of patent monetisation against other US companies.


We already wrote some responses to this, but we don't have the 'fire power' or 'access' of well-funded (by trolls and law firms) lobbyists. They keep brainwashing USPTO officials (more on that later this weekend) and spreading ridiculous conspiracy theories, insinuating that patent law is improving just because of "Evil" Google (the latest headline from Steve Brachmann, published on June 8th, is "Google Changes Its Code of Conduct After Years of Being Evil Towards Patent Owners"). What have they got to show for it? The core paragraph is this: "To accuse Google of operating with malevolent intent in recent years in order to serve its own corporate interests. First of all, consider Google’s ample financial largesse to D.C. politicians around the time that the America Invents Act (AIA) was signed into law. This includes the $800,000 contributed to former President Barack Obama’s 2012 election campaign (making it the third-largest contributor to the Obama campaign), the nearly $900,000 contributed to federal candidates running in 2012 for the House and the Senate (which was split 49 percent to Democrats and 50 percent to Republicans) and the $18 million total lobbying expenditures during 2012, the eighth-largest federal lobbying total among all entities. If spending money to influence political debate towards unjust ends is evil, Google’s been guilty of that for years."

What about law firms? And pharmaceutical companies? And countless others that are patent maximalists? What about technology companies other than Google? Google is like a drop in the ocean compared to the whole, but never let sites like Watchtroll (or IAM for that matter) digest reality, facts etc. that threaten loyalties with their own funding sources.

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