Patent Reform Is Dead; Patent Trolls Win

from the dead-dead-dead dept

As we predicted on Monday, it appears that patent trolls have won this round. Senator Patrick Leahy has announced that he's pulling patent reform from the agenda because there wasn't "sufficient support behind any comprehensive deal." That's bullshit. There is widespread consensus support on how to fix the problem of patent trolls. The problem is that patent trolls and organizations that abuse the patent system to prey on innovators don't like the solutions that are out there. And they started lobbying hard, so patent reform is dead. That is, rather than do the right thing and step up to fix the broken patent system, Leahy and others in the Senate caved in to lobbyists from patent abusing entities (not just trolls). Of course, we went through this same thing in 2004 through 2011 with the last attempt at fixing the patent system, and the end result there was useless.

One of these days, it would be nice if Congress actually took real leadership and did what was right, rather than worrying how some abusive companies will react.
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Filed Under: lobbying, patent reform, patent trolls, patents, senator patrick leahy


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 May 2014 @ 4:09pm

    Re:

    Universities, especially publicly funded ones, should not focus their attention on patents. Universities generally don't and probably shouldn't make most of their money by selling patented commercial products. University funded research should not be subject to patents by anyone. Universities should focus on conducting useful research and patents have mostly distracted them from that. At least part of the purpose of a legitimate university should be to advance our knowledge through education and research and not to simply maximize profits (ie:through patents or through patent licensing) so they can earn a reputation for making noteworthy achievements.

    In fact if a university did sue for infringement on products it doesn't sell they would be patent trolls. That would be an abuse of the system. Likewise a university may conduct research on patented products for academic purposes and still not infringe.

    So the difference between a university and a business that should make universities not subject to acquiring patents is that universities exist for academic purposes while businesses exist for profit.

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