Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Patents Government United States

Who Helped Kill Patent Troll Reform In the Senate 157

Posted by samzenpus
from the whoever-has-the-most-money dept.
First time accepted submitter VT-802-Software (3663479) writes "A bipartisan proposal to curb patent trolls was shelved by the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday. 'Supporters of the compromise accuse trial lawyers, universities, pharmaceutical companies and biotech companies for foiling the plan at the eleventh hour. As late as Tuesday, the University of Vermont and a biotech coalition each sent letters to Leahy opposing the legislation. "We believe the measures in the legislation go far beyond what is necessary or desirable to combat abusive patent litigation, and would do serious damage to the patent system," reads one of the letters. "Many of the provisions would have the effect of treating every patent holder as a patent troll."'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Who Helped Kill Patent Troll Reform In the Senate

Comments Filter:
  • Kudos (Score:5, Funny)

    by Tailhook (98486) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @08:11PM (#47071387)

    Somehow, someone failed to omit the (D) that time.

    A big moment for Slashdot.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ShanghaiBill (739463)

      A big moment for Slashdot.

      Not that big. The summary puts the blame on "lobbyists" when the real blame goes to the Democratic leadership of the Senate. It isn't as if the lobbyists were holding a gun to their head and forcing them to take the contributions. The prime saboteurs were Patrick Leahy (D-Vt) and Harry Reid (D-Nv). If you live in either of those states, you should remember this when you vote.

      • Re:Kudos (Score:4, Interesting)

        by pepty (1976012) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @10:11PM (#47071783)
        Also not a big moment for Slashdot: No discussion of which aspects of the legislation the biotechs and universities objected to. Not in the summary, the original story, or the discussion here.
        • There was a recent article (here, I think) pointing out how utterly clueless a lot of legislaters are on what they are legislating on - especially technical subjects. Most of them have some kind of legal background and for this they need a bit of that along with a bit of the technical. Was this bill fundamentally misguided or was it withdrawn because of opposition (up to and including bribery) from special interests? My guess would be "yes" to both ;-)

      • Bogus down mod... You are correct. It is not the lobbyist's fault when the politician takes the bait. However, don't single out the democrats. Their tag team partner republicans are in it over their heads also.

        It is the voters that helped kill patent 'reform' by reelecting politicians who take crooked money.

        • Re:Kudos (Score:4, Interesting)

          by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @11:47PM (#47072093)

          However, don't single out the democrats. Their tag team partner republicans are in it over their heads also.

          Can you provide a citation for this? Everything I read says it was the Democratic leadership that wanted it killed, mainly because of objections from trial lawyer organizations that are big donors to the Democrats. If you know of a Republican that was involved, please name and shame.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        because one of their biggest financial pillars is the trial lawyers (the type of lawyers who sue other people or defend people being sued). If you properly reform the patent system, you reduce the number of cases in the courts that need trial lawyers (on BOTH sides of every fight), you reduce the total number of "billable hours", and thus reduce campaign contributions to the Democrats. Incidentally, as Howard Dean (former DNC chairman) admitted [youtube.com] this is the same reason why "Obamacare" included NO "tort refo

        • by jedidiah (1196) on Friday May 23, 2014 @10:04AM (#47073985) Homepage

          > because one of their biggest financial pillars is the trial lawyers

          Only a small minority of lawyers are even allowed to handle these cases.

          So using lawyers in general as some kind of bogeyman here shows an extreme level of ignorance and/or an extreme level of contempt for the electorate.

          Only the "nerd" contingent of the bar is even allowed to apply for the kind of credential that allows one to practice in this area.

      • by swillden (191260)

        It isn't as if the lobbyists were holding a gun to their head and forcing them to take the contributions.

        And it isn't even as if there weren't other lobbyists pushing for the reform.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      You seem to be trying to imply that Patrick Leahy is to blame for the failure of this legislation. In fact, the article is saying that he was the champion of this effort but has been forced to shelve the bill thanks to lobbying. If anything, the D next to his name makes the Democrats look good, not the other way around.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by mellon (7048)

        It's hard to understand how Leahy could have been forced into shelving the bill. He could have been arm-twisted into it, or he could have been predisposed to do it, but forced? How would that happen?

        • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          SImple. There's a D by his name. All D's are victims when their actions don't jibe with the predominant Millennial view of them being the fearless, freedom-loving, progressive warriors for social justice.

          • Re:Kudos (Score:5, Funny)

            by mellon (7048) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @11:34PM (#47072063) Homepage

            People who generalize are all idiots. And if I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times: nobody likes a person who exaggerates.

          • by rtb61 (674572)

            It's like your not paying any attention to politics at all. They care called political parties not because they just have exclusive expensive soirees paid for lobbyists, although that happens quite regularly but because they communicate with each other upon a regular basis to agree upon policy, campaigns and who is in and who is out as well and most importantly of all how they will vote on issues. The also collectively gather intelligence on opposition parties, although how much they are actually the oppo

        • Re:Kudos (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2014 @10:12PM (#47071787)
          Usually what happens is that when the sponsor of a bill finds in the eleventh hour that they have lost enough support to pass the bill, as is the case here, they will shelve it rather than forcing a losing vote. Doing it this way means that other legislators haven't committed to a position on it, leaving the possibility open to bring it back in the future. The article gives a second reason - if the bill is brought to the floor right now it might not get support from Harry Reid, which would go a long way towards sinking it.

          If you're determined to be pedantic about the word "forced" then you're welcome to pick another. The article does not suggest in any way that Leahy wanted to bill to fail.
        • Re:Kudos (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2014 @10:20PM (#47071807)

          Because if you bring a bill up for a vote when you know it will fail, then that's the end of the line. Nobody is going to change their vote later... that's flip-flopping and it makes you look bad as a politician.

          Whereas if you shelve it, you can bide your time and try to reestablish the necessary votes.

          In any event, one of the major provisions of the bill was to permit the courts to shift fees onto the plaintiff when they bring frivolous claims. This was uncommon before because Federal Circuit case law made it difficult for trial judges to decide to do this.

          However, a recent SCOTUS case overruled the Federal Circuit case law. It's now believed that more district court judges will shift fees. Because of this recent development, lots of politicians who were going to vote for the bill have probably decided that it's not worth sticking their neck out on a vote if the recent SCOTOS decision will being about much of the effect.

          So most likely the idea is to shelve the bill and wait-and-see what the effect the SCOTUS decision will have on litigation. If it doesn't curtail litigation in the next year or two, then I would expect the bill to be resurrected.

          • by mellon (7048)

            That's not a bad spin. I hope you're right. I have a lot of respect for Leahy (he's one of my senators) but I'm sometimes frustrated by what he does with respect to patent law, and I was really frustrated with what he was doing with copyright law back in the days of SOPA/PIPA. I think he's learned a bit from that experience, but I"m not sure. I still remember watching Batman: The Dark Knight Rises, seeing his cameo and feeling sick to my stomach at the utter tone-deafness that that appearance repres

        • It was not Leahy since he worked hard to get the bill ready to pass committee. It was Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D). It was reported that Reid threatened to not allow the bill to reach the senate floor due to objections from the pharmaceutical industry and trial lawyers.

          The clue is when everyone blamed "democratic leadership".

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Forced to shelve the bill because of lobbying.

        If politicians keep getting reelected after listening to lobbyists it should be no surprise they listen to lobbyists more than the voters. ;)

        If the voters don't like this then I blame the voters - they failed in their responsibility to:
        0) provide feedback
        1) vote for better candidates

        BUT the truth is more that most voters don't care about such stuff (they care and vote on "hot button" topics[1]). Two minorities do. One is against and one is for such stuff and has $$$$$.

        I suspect the politicians do actually c

      • You can't possibly be serious, or that naive.
    • lol I was thinking exactly the same thing. A day that will live in infamy, to be sure.
  • by symbolset (646467) *
    Money can buy.
  • Oh noe's (Score:4, Insightful)

    by future assassin (639396) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @08:14PM (#47071395) Homepage

    "Many of the provisions would have the effect of treating every patent holder as a patent troll."'"

    Oh but when it comes to regular citizen being treated like suspects because of a few rotten apples then thats ok but forbid this would happen to big money holders.

    • Re:Oh noe's (Score:4, Insightful)

      by jonsmirl (114798) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:23PM (#47071635) Homepage

      It would be cool if the companies suypporting this bill sent about about 20,000 demand letters to Vermont and Nevada companies and then started prosecuting on them. Should be easy since overly broad patents are a dime a dozen. Then maybe Leahy and Reid will get the message before their constituents break their doors down.

      • A company that has that kind of resources has already created their own patent suite, which is cheaper _for a large company_.

        The most effective way to eliminate patent trolls would be to discard software patents as a clear hindrance to creativity, which they are in their current state. But I don't see that as feasible in the current political marketplace.

    • by gnupun (752725)

      Oh but when it comes to regular citizen being treated like suspects because of a few rotten apples then thats ok but forbid this would happen to big money holders.

      Yes, because the common people are the serfs, whereas the big money holders are their masters/rulers. Therefore different rules apply.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Mr. Lahey is a drunk bastard and always will be, he and Randy can fuck off.

  • by MrBigInThePants (624986) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @08:16PM (#47071411)
    It does not matter who stepped up to the plate this particular time.

    Your system of government is corrupt and out of control.

    Asking for names is not seeing the forest for the trees.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Moron. Outing the corrupt is the first step to removing them from office.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        1) That almost certainly wont happen when you out them - certainly not over an issue like this.

        2) They will be replaced with another corrupt drone even if they are.

        Why?

        Because it is the system of government that has become corrupted. Cutting off a few branches when the tree is infected will not work.

        There is something moronic here and it is not my comment....
        • by mellon (7048) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:12PM (#47071593) Homepage

          Actually, your comment is moronic, because it implies that the right thing to do is cut down the tree, by which I assume you mean destroy what's left of the democracy. What do you think will arise in its place? Something better? Read your fucking history. The right thing to do is take this seriously and get active. It's worked in the past, and it will work again. Burning down the house is not the right way to solve this problem.

          • You're absolutely right. The only way to fix this is to nuke the problem from orbit. /AliensMovieQuote*

            * just in case some idiot from the NSA/FBI/CIA/whatever never heard of that movie, this comment is only a joke. I do not possess the ability to send anything in orbit nor do I own any nukes. The only radio-active material in a music CD titled "Radio Gaga", which turns active when inserted into a CD/DVD/BluRay player.

            • if you have to explain that you were not serious, then we have already lost any shred of liberty we once had.

              and if the NSA is reading this, FUCK YOU!!!!

              yeah. you read that right. illegal organizations like the NSA can go fuck themselves.

              find my IP and come after me, assholes. not even sure I care anymore. we're fucked as a country, anyway.

          • by aevan (903814)
            The american system is the only true democracy then, there is no better form it could take?
            • by sg_oneill (159032) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:37PM (#47071673)

              I'd call American democracy a pretty good prototype of the real thing.

              But its just a prototype, and beta ended loooong ago.

              • I'd call American democracy a pretty good prototype of the real thing.

                But its just a prototype, and beta ended loooong ago.

                That America's even a democracy appears to be under debate at the moment...
                Oligarchy, not democracy: Americans have ‘near-zero’ input on policy – report [rt.com]

              • by Anonymous Coward

                Our founders VERY EXPLICITLY did NOT create a Democracy (some of the most-famous like Adams and Franklin cautioned strongly against it). They created a "Constitutional Republic" with "Democratic elections" - Which means we have democratically-elected representatives AND a constitution that protects the political minority from the acts of the political majority (something NOT done in a "Democracy") no matter how much the majority wants to do those acts and votes for them. Our founders warned against forming

                • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                  by sg_oneill (159032)

                  Our founders VERY EXPLICITLY did NOT create a Democracy (some of the most-famous like Adams and Franklin cautioned strongly against it). They created a "Constitutional Republic" with "Democratic elections"

                  You do realize this is a talking point created by politically illiterate republican party activists who didn't like the fact that americas political system was in the countries name.

                  If you have elections, by definition, your a democracy. Thats all the word means.

                  If you dont have a monarch you are a republi

                  • by sg_oneill (159032)

                    er, not "in the countries name", I mean "in the opposition parties name".
                    Pretty sure "USA" doesnt stand for "Democracy". (Freud would be amused I guess)

                    Sorry!

              • by RogerWilco (99615)

                I think the first-part-the-pole district based system is very flawed.

                - It makes lawmakers more beholden to local constituencies that to the general good of the country.
                - It leads to a two party system.
                - It makes it really hard to create new parties to keep the system fresh and with-the-times.
                - Because everything is represented in only two parties, these parties are overly broad and tend to have a lot of infighting.
                - It makes things like gerrymandering possible.
                - It makes some votes much more valuable than o

            • by mellon (7048)

              It appears to be the case that several other democracies are working better, but that doesn't mean that there's a path from our democracy as it is now to a democracy like those. If nothing else, the culture is different. It's easy to think of these things as narratives with clear outcomes, but the reality is that we are where we are, and we move incrementally or discontinuously from there. Incremental change is a lot safer than discontinuous change, because we get to evaluate whether we are going in t

              • by CBravo (35450)
                They somehow managed to give black people voting rights in US history. So maybe now it is time to stop the political duopoly and allow other parties to effectively have a saying. The current situation is a political non-compete-scheme.
          • by Anonymous Coward

            The United States is not a democracy. It is a [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_republic]federal republic[/url].
            [quote]What do you think will arise in its place?[/quote]
            A republic can be replaced with a republic. There are plenty of ways the system can be improved. Most of which would threaten the jobs of the politicians themselves, so it is not likely any real improvements will happen under the current system.

          • Not necessarily. A popular, grass roots movement towards a 3rd party that actually represents the people would work also - assuming the candidates can live long enough to get voted for.

            I would suggest, at least at first, putting up candidates who are good at dodging bullets.

            Both real and metaphorical....

            NB: My proposal just made your over-reactive comment moronic.

            Awesome to be me.
          • Go to https://mayone.us/ [mayone.us] and read a little bit. The video explaining it is just 4 minutes long ...

            Donate if you can, and do spread the word anyway.

            As he says, it's a little bit of a moonshot but we need to try it!

  • Lawyers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dreamchaser (49529) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @08:19PM (#47071433) Homepage Journal

    As long as lawyers are the majority of legislators you'll never see real patent *or* torte reform. End of story.

    • I beg to differ. They can increase the value of their patent litigations by extending the validity of patents from the present 20 years to first 50 years, then 500 years. Heck, copyright started with 14, and now it's lifetime+70, which could add up to something like 150 years, so 500 years for patents is not that inconceivable. Then you better have good lawyers and pay them a lot of money when the stuff they can get you can last for generations.
      • You just described the problem, not the solution or anything resembling reform. You must be a lawyer.

    • As long law schools are allowed to pump out vast numbers of lawyers, this problem will continue.

      • as long as 'business gets any damned thing they want', you mean.

        lawyers are powered by business. take away the extreme power that business (in the US) has and you've just leveled things.

        lawyers can work for us, too; but there's just no money in it, so they don't!

        • by swillden (191260)

          as long as 'business gets any damned thing they want', you mean.

          Business is on both sides of this issue. Much of the tech industry is fighting for patent reform. And notice that universities are fighting against it. The issue isn't as cut and dried as you paint it.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Mmm, torte reform...

      /homer simpson

  • As it should be (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Dega704 (1454673) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @08:26PM (#47071457)
    "Many of the provisions would have the effect of treating every patent holder as a POTENTIAL patent troll." -Fixed that for you
    • Re:As it should be (Score:4, Insightful)

      by loonycyborg (1262242) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:21PM (#47071627)
      If they assert that even such tame legislation can harm 'legitimate' patent holder then it's an argument in favor of abolition of patent system altogether, because it's hard to find meaningful difference between 'legitimate' and 'troll' which makes the patent system itself more harmful than useful since any obviously existing abuses run unchecked. Each such successful lobbying effort supports the position of patent/copyright abolitionists like me :P
  • Supporters of the compromise accuse trial lawyers, universities, pharmaceutical companies and biotech companies for foiling the plan at the eleventh hour.

    Lawyers? They suck. Pharmaceutical and biotech companies? Boo! Universities? Horr- wait, what?

    If universities are opposed to the law, then that means that it probably defines "troll" as any non-practicing entity or those who make their income from licensing and litigation rather than sale of products, and therefore implicates research universities like MIT, Johns Hopkins, and Cornell. And yeah, if the law is going to force them to abandon some of their research efforts, then it's a bad law. Patent trolls are a problem, but they need a targeted solution, not one that will damage an entire R&D industry.

    For example, one of the big troll-y issues was suing tons of unrelated defendants in a single suit - like Microsoft in Seattle, and Google in Mountain View, and Apple in Cupertino, and Joe Shmoe Consumer in Florida... They had no interest in Joe, he only bought a single product that was alleged to infringe, but by including him, they could argue that Texas was halfway between everyone, so it was a good venue, rather than, say, Northern California. So, in the America Invents Act, they changed the joinder rules and said you could only include multiple defendants if they were explicitly working together to infringe, like subsidiaries or agent/principal relationships. Poof, overnight, Joe stopped getting sued. Good solution: targets the problem perfectly, doesn't harm legitimate inventors.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:09PM (#47071577)

      Meh. Universities seem like part of the problem. They take public funds to pay for research and patent the results. If my tax dollars are paying for research, I want to share in the rewards rather than having the profits privatized to pay for some litigious university IP department.

      • by Crypto Gnome (651401) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @10:54PM (#47071915) Homepage Journal
        You, sir, are a complete IDIOT!,

        The money that universities make off their patents doesn't go into the pockets of some mysterious investor but BACK INTO FUNDING THE UNIVERSITY.

        As a direct result of being able to profit from their patented research universities can afford to do more (or more expensive) research without having to dip into TAX DOLLARS to do so.
        • by Anonymous Coward

          Oh, bullshit. Tuition costs and student loan debt are spiraling out of control. Allowing the universities to socialize risk (i.e. taxpayer-funded speculative research) and then privatize the profits is immoral and doesn't do anything appreciable to fix the problem.

          I also refer you to Bowen's Law [wikipedia.org] regarding tuition costs.

          There are far better ways to fix the problem than to allow universities to become litigious patent trolls. Those lawyers the university employs to patent troll don't work for free.

          It's simple

        • by Anonymous Coward

          You obviously haven't ever been involved with obtaining a university patent. As an inventor, I received a very sizable portion of the returns personally. Like taking candy from .... well tax payers.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          A large number of Patent generating Research Universities are not public. They are private and are not funded by tax dollars.

        • You, sir, are a complete IDIOT!, The money that universities make off their patents doesn't go into the pockets of some mysterious investor but BACK INTO FUNDING THE UNIVERSITY. As a direct result of being able to profit from their patented research universities can afford to do more (or more expensive) research without having to dip into TAX DOLLARS to do so.

          Oh, name calling in capitals, your point must be irrefutable and absolute truth. Guess someone struck a sensitive nerve.
          The truth is that half that money would go into lining pockets, not get reinvested in actual research. Universities are big business too, and only an IDIOT would deny it.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:13PM (#47071595)

      Research is not the same as patents. The race to earn patents as a way of funding University research is corrupting University research by making Universities into unpaid R&D divisions for the private sector. That's a big part of the reason you don't have things like Bell Labs any more; they've been outsourced so that governments pay for a lot of the infrastructure by paying for the Unviersity.

      It's not Universities that are opposed to fixing the patent system. It's the people in Universities right now who make their money by being invested in the current corrupt patent system. Universities, as they should be, would not be serving as subsidised corporate R&D and filing patents.

      • by alen (225700)

        why should corporations do R&D?
        one company invents something they might keep it for themselves and not license it. a university will license to anyone

    • by Goldsmith (561202)

      Universities generally insist that all IP developed as part of a sponsored agreement is owned by the university (as opposed to the inventors or the funders - the two normal ways of doing things). This isn't the "classic" troll behavior, but it's not much better. It has the same result of depriving the actual inventors (small business, professors, grad students) of an opportunity to commercialize their work. It deprives the funders (US government, non profits, small and large business) of IP they should r

      • by gtall (79522)

        Yes and no. Professors and graduate students have their resources provided by the Universities. You could argue they were the ones that got the research grant. However, they wouldn't have gotten those research grants had they not been working for the Unis. No one is going to fund I.M. DipStick in his garage. And funding is only part of the game, facilities, payroll, insurance, healthcare, etc. are all handled by the Unis. The Professors and grad students are employees. This is no different from working in g

    • by hudsucker (676767)

      Remember that the despised Eolas patents (claiming invention of web site interactivity & plugins, including playing videos) were originally issued to the University of California, and then licensed to Eolas.

  • by dshk (838175) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @09:25PM (#47071641)

    "Many of the provisions would have the effect of treating every patent holder as a patent troll."

    Software should not have been patented, and software patents are indeed not allowed in Europe (although they are lobbying hard to bring the broken US system into Europe).

    I am yet to see a software patent which worth the effort of reading and decoding its intentionally unclear text. In the best case they are basically direct applications of unpatentable mathematical knowledge produced by real scientists, and not the inventors mentioned in the patent.

    So yes, anybody who uses software patents for litigation or for any other purpose except defending against a troll, is indeed a patent troll.

    • by thegarbz (1787294)

      Who modded this off topic. It is perfectly on topic and quite insightful too.

      The summary says one complaint was that everyone was treated like a patent troll. Well when the majority of patent dispute cases we hear about amount to "I did some math", "Your genes are mine", "We've been doing this for years, but look it's now ON A PHONE", and "Oh my god I did this with only one button", patent holders both practising and licencing are actually trolling.

  • It is already broken beyond repair.

  • by Beeftopia (1846720) on Thursday May 22, 2014 @10:44PM (#47071879)

    It started last summer, when patent trolls started messing with one of the biggest political donors of all time [realtor.org] - the National Association of Realtors. [opensecrets.org]

    If you take a look at Patrick Leahy's donors [opensecrets.org], you can see real estate is down the list.

    Summary - this issue got before Congress only when the NAR was bitten by it. I don't the issue is dead, not by a long shot. The NAR has deep connections in government and unless they somehow get the issue to go away for them personally, anti-patent troll legislation is likely to come back. Perhaps more quietly next time.

  • by Chas (5144)

    Uh. The patent system is ALREADY royally fucked beyond belief.

    This was supposed to be a first step to actually cleaning it up and making it work AS INTENDED.

    Guess we couldn't have that happen. Not enough money in it for people...

    Fuckers.

  • Who still buys into that garbage that only Republicans protect big business that the nice and friendly, warm and fuzzy, Democrats are the party of the People?
    (Hint: They're the party of the Union bosses and every corporate lobbyist with a checkbook. At least the Republicans don't lie about it.)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The "patent reform" that was proposed would make it impossible for individual inventors and small companies to get patents and enforce them. Currently, it costs approximately $10,000 in legal fees to get a patent. This is also takes, on average, between 3-5 years from when you file an application. Two years is the absolute minimum, but I have worked with clients who have had patent applications pending for as long as 12 years because of the incompetence and poor funding of the PTO. Then, if you want to

  • ... it's the lack of effort in patent examination. The reason proper examination isn't being done is because patent applicants don't pay enough in fees. The time a patent examiner gets toward a case is a matter of hours: they are evaluated upon the number of cases they dispose of. It's easier to allow a case to issue with the appearance of proper search and examination, than it is to find proper grounds to make a legally valid rejection.

    Patent trolls are merely people who take advantage of these facts.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    What they really meant to say: "We don't mind the legislation, so long as it doesn't stop the gravy train. Your legislation would actually *do something* and we have found the extra income to be like winning the lottery every year. So the legislation must be stopped: make it as toothless as the Justice Department toward the banks after the 2008 financial crash, and we will be good."

  • If the US doesn't make it easier to challenge patents, we're screwed because foreign entities who don't honor patents like we do are innovating more and more, and patenting more and more.

    A good example is to look at who has all the patents for graphene research. It mostly ain't us.

    http://www.businessinsider.com... [businessinsider.com]

  • According to opensecrets.org Patrick Leahy -D(umbass) took $572,000 [opensecrets.org] from Lawyers and Law Firms in 2014 alone. In his career from 1989 - 2014, he's taken $1.5 million [opensecrets.org]. The United States of America: best government money can buy.

Elegance and truth are inversely related. -- Becker's Razor

Working...