Patent Riffs and Links for 7-11-17 – High Tech Inventors Alliance

Eight Leading Tech Companies Form High Tech Inventors Alliance to Advocate for a Balanced Patent System | PRNEWSWIRE
Press Release: “The Alliance’s members are Adobe, Amazon, Cisco, Dell, Google, Intel, Oracle and Salesforce. They own more than 115,000 U.S. patents and recognize the need of all inventors — from the largest corporation or university to the sole practitioner – to have a well-functioning patent system.”

Oracle, Amazon, Google, and Salesforce finally agree on something | THEREGISTER.CO.UK
Priorities: “Among the first priorities for the group will be to preserve the Inter Partes Review program, which allows companies to challenge the legitimacy of patents directly to the PTO. The program has been challenged and is awaiting review and judgement from the Supreme Court.

The HTIA also says it wants to require more detailed explanations of infringement when a claim is filed, and get the courts to crack down on ‘venue shopping’ by patent troll litigants trying to take the trials to cooperative judges.”

Eight Leading Tech Companies Form High Tech Inventors Alliance to Advocate for a Balanced Patent System | HIGHTECHINVENTORS
“‘Innovation means creating new and better products and services. It is fundamental to the success of the high-tech industry and its ability to drive economic growth and create American jobs,’ said John Thorne, the Alliance’s general counsel and spokesperson. ‘Collectively our members spent $62.9 billion on research and development last year and they have over 447,000 employees here in the United States.’

Thorne added: ‘When the patent system does not function well, it undermines rather than supports innovation, to the detriment of all Americans – inventors, employees, investors in productive businesses and ultimately, consumers.'”

House IP subcommittee looks for further ways to curb patent trolls after TC Heartland decision | IPWATCHDOG
Thorne on TC Heartland: “Following Mossoff was John Thorne, partner at Kellogg Hansen Todd Figel & Frederick PLLC (the same firm where Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch worked from 1995 to 2005), who testified that he’s represented both plaintiffs and defendants in patent infringement cases in Eastern Texas. He said that venue issues were not solved by the TC Heartland decision and that the fight over the proper definition will likely occur on two fronts: first, what constitutes a regular place of business; and second, when should a judge transfer in the interests of justice. Thorne questioned Mossoff’s written testimony, especially the assertion that the TC Heartland case was hijacked by interests looking to weaken patent rights. “Nothing in the opinion talks about that,” Thorne said. Of course, if nothing in the opinion mentions the words “Texas” or “Marshall,” the Texas city where E.D. Tex. holds court, as Thorne notes, and yet news report after news report after news report after news report ties Texas and/or “patent trolls” to the case, that would seem to support Mossoff’s point that, somewhere along the line, the media narrative on the case got hijacked. Thorne said he agreed with Mossoff that TC Heartland was one-sided in its result, though his perspective was that SCOTUS had unanimously decided to return to the original statute. Thorne argued that, as the courts decide the proper definition of venue following TC Heartland, due in large part to a lack of case law surrounding the second part of the statute, perhaps a few franchised Culver’s franchised locations within a district shouldn’t be considered a regular established place of business, or that delivering a product sold from one state to a consumer in a second state shouldn’t create venue in the state through which the product traveled. “If the courts are not careful, the incentives will be against growth,” Thorne said.”

Congressman Issa calls patent trolls and plaintiffs interchangeable during ITC hearing | IPWATCHDOG
Thorne on the ITC: “The uniquely leveraging power of ITC decisions in patent infringement cases were one reason why such a venue would be so attractive to patent owners, according to testimony given by John Thorne, partner at Kellogg Huber Hansen Todd Evans & Figel, PLLC. Thorne gave an example involving television set top boxes, a consumer product, which may involve technologies protected by many hundreds of patents held by a myriad of companies. A district court ruling could find that patent infringement could occur and yet not issue an injunction if the court decides that disrupting a cable company’s ability to import more set top boxes to add customers would harm the public good. Thorne also noted that the ITC was about half as likely as district courts to throw out a patent case on charges of patent invalidity.”