The automatic federal spending cuts imposed by the U.S. government this March have been met with strong resistance by lobbyists suggesting that their affiliated organizations are either too important to be hamstrung by budget cuts or should be immune from the austerity measures on principle. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office could be classified in each of those categories, according to some, with several leading technology firms now framing sequestration as a personal betrayal to their historical good will.
The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed a lower court's ruling on the legality of Dish Network's automatic ad-skipping device. This likely bolstered the company's stance in ongoing copyright infringement litigation with the FOX broadcasting network. The ruling might not bring proceedings between the two sides to a close, but the precedent set could already be enough to inspire media innovators to develop their own methods of bypassing traditional advertising embedded in content delivery protocols.
This week, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet heard testimony from music, photography and movie industry representatives hoping for stronger national copyright codes. It remains to be seen, however, how strongly this familiar refrain may sway legislative opinions as Congress continues its pursuit of comprehensive copyright reform fit for the digital age.
Congressional leaders have spoken at length about the economic importance of reducing the rate of frivolous lawsuits filed within the U.S. patent system, but the strongest motion yet may have been introduced this month in a bill co-sponsored by California Representatives Darrell Issa and Judy Chu.
The Advisory Council for the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has been a vital source of knowledge exchange and dissemination as it relates to clarifying and streamlining judicial procedures. In its latest model order, the council has turned an eye toward patent claims and prior art in an effort to further reduce the administrative burden on intellectual property litigants and courts.
Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, a primary sponsor of the America Invents Act, is once again exploring pressing patent management issues by urging the National Institutes of Health to invoke the march-in rights afforded to it under the Bayh-Dole Act and force Myriad Genetics to license its breast and ovarian cancer testing protocols in the name of public health.
Indiana University confirmed earlier this week that the number of invention disclosures filed by faculty and researchers nearly doubled between FY 2009 and FY 2012. As a result, the greater Indianapolis area is gaining a reputation as one of the nation's most promising emerging innovation hubs.
An Arizona inventor was recently forced to swallow a bitter pill after a lucrative stream of patent licensing revenue was cut off by the application of a controversial Supreme Court precedent.
The threats posed by pay-for-delay patent strategies were thrust into the spotlight last month as the U.S. Federal Trade Commission authorized antitrust investigators to more closely examine these controversial business practices. A new study released by two nonprofit public interest groups is now adding depth to the conversation, presenting objective evidence for the financial burden brand name drug manufacturers are imposing on consumers.
Trademarks typically garner the most pop culture attention among the major intellectual asset categories, but that is not to say the processes surrounding their registration and enforcement are always readily understood. For companies or sole proprietors wondering when the time is right to formally register their mark, there are several subtle factors to consider.
Don Mattrick, former president of Microsoft's interactive entertainment division, surprised many earlier in the month with his announcement that he would be leaving the firm to assume a new role as the chief executive officer for struggling social gaming company Zynga. As Mattrick begins his transition, industry observers expect his historical familiarity with intellectual property management to serve his future employer well.
The General Services Administration, which directs the procurement of federal office space, indefinitely canceled its plans to find a permanent home for the USPTO's Silicon Valley satellite location. It remains to be seen whether the pressure imposed by local legislators and industrial leaders in the coming weeks will be enough to convince federal officials to stretch slim budgets in the name of enabling procedural efficiency and business innovation.
Earlier this month, the World Intellectual Property Organization, INSEAD and Cornell University jointly released the 2013 edition of their Global Innovation Index. One of the most significant themes highlighted in the latest iteration of the study was the sheer diversity of strategies employed by countries attempting to better themselves in the innovation economy.
The concept of copyright is based on the notion that creators of an original work are entitled to equitable compensation for their production, and consumers are entitled to an authentic version of that good. But in the complicated climate of literary copyrights, traditional intellectual property protection may actually be suppressing the long-term availability and consumption of writers' works.
As climate change research advocates in and out of government offices request stricter transparency for energy and chemical companies, business directors are pushing back with concerns that their continuous disclosure of proprietary processes may violate fundamental trade secrets management principles. These tensions were recently exacerbated by discussion of a potential Environmental Protection Agency proposal which would require companies to publicly release information relating to the exact methods by which the businesses calculate greenhouse gas emissions.
The logistics of trade secrets management are rarely discussed in open forums, and often times their only recognizable manifestations lie buried in the fine print of non-disclosure agreements. But as both private and public sector misappropriations come to light, executives are seeking smarter ways to detect when their proprietary inventions may be at risk.
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers' (ICANN) Board of Directors recently approved a new domain name registrant accreditation process which could be a valuable deterrent to the scourge of online piracy and copyright infringement.
Fresenius Medical Care and Baxter International have been involved in a series of infringement disputes over the last decade concerning the features of dialysis machines produced by each company. Litigation between the two sides may be nearing its end after a unique application of the USPTO's post-grant review process.
As digital innovators attempt to bridge the gap between traditional TV broadcasters and increasingly on-the-go audiences, a number of thorny copyright questions have arisen. Following in the footsteps of Aereo, streaming specialist FilmOn now finds itself fighting back against infringement allegations authored by the likes of ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX.
The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) unveiled plans for a new pilot program intended to bring about faster, more cost-effective resolutions to import trade cases hinging on intellectual property infringement disputes.