If the Patent Reform saga has a “Darth Vader villain”, it is able attorney Mark Lemley . Earlier this week, 3000 miles away from his Silicon Valley death star, he realized he was at an “away game” when pro-patent hero former Chief Judge Paul Michel assumed the podium at the Leadership 2017 policy conference at Washington DC’s Newseum and in his keynote speech said,
“Several years ago, it would have been little exaggeration to say that we are facing a challenge. Today we are facing a crisis.”
In another post IPWatchdog’s Gene Quinn reviews the pro-patent positions of other conference speakers whose views reflect the work of pro patent home state universities. Gene reiterates the truth about “efficient infringement” and the need to reestablish patent rights as property not liability rights or post-eBay “public rights” to recover judicially-awarded monetary damages after risky and expensive infringement proceedings that at best result in compulsory licensing.
Sadly while we’re watching a patent system train-wreck in USA, China’s innovation bullet train, freshly loaded with US recruited researchers and hungry venture capitalists is speeding towards a reliable patent system in a huge market. Meanwhile US House Judiciary tub-thumper for ICT mega-techs, “Landslide Lee” Issa is promising to add “modular” HR 9 amendments to the next relevant vehicle bill that comes his way this session. Issa heard from angry inventors during a re-election he barely won in a ballot recount. But he won. He is angry. And he needs to hear more. Our own ‘Darth Vader Lemley” as Gene diplomatically points out, was out-manned on the Leadership DC dais this week. But unless we continue working to save commercialization for federal grant agencies and ourselves, when an opportune bill reaches Issa’s subcommittee desk this session “Landslide Lee” will not be similarly out-manned. See Inconvenient Truth: America no longer fuels the fire of creative genius with the patent system .