Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Goodlatte Pushes Patent Reform

United States House Committee on the Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte, a Virginia Republican, recently released a new proposal to reform United States patent law (document courtesy of PatentlyO, which also has a nice discussion of its provisions).  A summary accompanying a May 2013 version of the bill described its goals as follows:
This bill helps to address the issues that businesses of all sizes and industries face from patent troll-type behavior and aims to correct the current asymmetries surrounding abusive patent litigation. This bill reduces the costs of frivolous litigation, increases patent certainty and promotes the creation of American jobs.
There is little appetite in Congress for patent reform at the moment, though the alleged threat of patent trolls has captured some attention.  Furthermore, Congress is likely to be much more focused this fall on a possible federal government shutdown, the unfolding tragedy in Syria, and implementing Obamacare than on issues of patent law that cause instant eye-glazing-over in most people, even at the best of times.

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