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Category Archives: Patent and Trademark

Paper – Challenge Restraints and the Scope of the Patent

Hovenkamp, Erik, Challenge Restraints and the Scope of the Patent (November 8, 2016). Available for download at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2866630

“Patent rights are not the only important legal entitlements conferred by the Patent Act. It also vests “challenge rights” in third parties, permitting them to challenge granted patents as invalid or uninfringed, and potentially clearing a path for privileged competition. These classes of rights perform opposite policy functions, with patent rights providing an inducement for invention and challenge rights providing a check against unwarranted or overbroad patent enforcement. And, unlike patent rights, the Patent Act never suggests that challenge rights are alienable – i.e. that they may be transacted or constrained through contract. As such, “challenge restraints” – contractual restrictions on a party’s challenge rights – are not within “the scope of the patent.” This suggests not that they are categorically unlawful, but simply that they do not enjoy safe harbor from antitrust attack.”

FTC Report Sheds New Light on How Patent Assertion Entities Operate

“A new Federal Trade Commission report spotlights the business practices of patent assertion entities (PAEs), firms that acquire patents from third parties and then try to make money by licensing or suing accused infringers.  The report includes several recommendations for patent litigation reforms. “This report is a big step forward in enhancing our understanding of… Continue Reading

GAO – Patent Office Has Opportunities to Further Improve Application Review and Patent Quality

Intellectual Property: Patent Office Has Opportunities to Further Improve Application Review and Patent Quality, GAO-16-883T: Published: Sep 16, 2016. Publicly Released: Sep 16, 2016. “U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) examiners face a variety of challenges in reviewing patent applications and issuing high quality patents. Some challenges affect examiners’ ability to complete a thorough review… Continue Reading

CRS – Stealing Trade Secrets and Economic Espionage

Stealing Trade Secrets and Economic Espionage: An Overview of the Economic Espionage Act, Charles Doyle, Senior Specialist in American Public Law. August 19, 2016. “Stealing a trade secret is a federal crime when the information relates to a product in interstate or foreign commerce, 18 U.S.C. 1832 (theft of trade secrets), or when the intended… Continue Reading

Final Report of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology Patent Damages Workshop

Graham, Stuart J.H. and Menell, Peter S. and Shapiro, Carl and Simcoe, Timothy, Final Report of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology Patent Damages Workshop (August 15, 2016). Texas Intellectual Prfoperty Law Journal, Forthcoming. Available for download at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2823658 “The determination of patent damages lies at the heart of patent law and policy,… Continue Reading

The Federal Circuit Rules on Trademarks Considered Offensive

CRS Reports & Analysis Legal Sidebar – The Federal Circuit Rules on Trademarks Considered Offensive: May Affect Redskins Trademark Dispute. August 4, 2016. “Two separate cases involving the revocation of the Washington Redskins’ federally registered trademarks (Pro-Football, Inc. v. Blackhorse) and the refusal to grant registration for a rock band’s name (In re Tam) raise… Continue Reading

GAO Reports – Patent Office Audits

Intellectual Property: Patent Office Should Define Quality, Reassess Incentives, and Improve Clarity, GAO-16-490: Published: Jun 30, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 20, 2016: “GAO found that district court filings of new patent infringement lawsuits increased from about 2,000 in 2007 to more than 5,000 in 2015, while the number of defendants named in these lawsuits increased… Continue Reading

The National Archives of the US Coloring Book of Patents 2016

“The National Archives of the US Coloring Book of Patents 2016 We’ve chosen some of our favorite patents from our holdings for you to color. We’d love to see how you color them in—share them with us on Twitter by using the hashtag #ColorOurCollections and tagging @usnatarchives. These patents came from the Records of the… Continue Reading

CRS Report – Intellectual Property Rights Violations

Via FAS – Intellectual Property Rights Violations: Federal Civil Remedies and Criminal Penalties Related to Copyrights, Trademarks, Patents, and Trade Secrets. Brian T. Yeh, Legislative Attorney. May 27, 2016. “This report provides information describing the federal civil remedies and criminal penalties that may be available as a consequence of violations of the federal intellectual property… Continue Reading

MailChimp Content Style Guide

MailChimp Content Style Guide – MailChimp 2016. This work is available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. [Note – I am a MailChimp customer and am pleased this guide is available.] Continue Reading

NASA Makes Dozens of Patents Available in Public Domain to Benefit US Industry

“NASA has released 56 formerly-patented agency technologies into the public domain, making its government-developed technologies freely available for unrestricted commercial use. In addition to the release of these technologies, a searchable database now is available that catalogs thousands of expired NASA patents already in the public domain. These technologies were developed to advance NASA missions… Continue Reading

Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2015 presented to President Obama

Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2015 – “This bill amends the federal criminal code to create a private civil cause of action for trade secret misappropriation. Specifically, the bill authorizes a trade secret owner to file a civil action in a U.S. district court seeking relief for trade secret misappropriation related to a product or… Continue Reading