Do Patents Help or Hurt Innovation?
Skepticism about the patent system is growing even as more businesses and people benefit from IP rights.
Recent passage of the biggest overall of U.S. patents since the 1950s does not seem to have meant much, and cries of “too much” patenting are still being heard. A recent story in The Economist (“The spluttering invention machine”) underscores the issue.
Are patents net positive for innovation and commerce, or are they merely a drain on them that fills the pockets of special interests? Why do many IP-rich companies want to see weaker not stronger patents?
Is the playing field for patents leveler today or does it still favor some holders over others?
“The Great Patent Debate” taking place at the Intellectual Property Business Congress at San Francisco’s Palace Hotel on June 21 will attempt to find out.
Participating in what is expected to be a heated discussion: Michael Meurer, author of Patent Failure: How Judges, Bureaucrats, and Lawyers Put Innovators at Risk, a controversial book which details a complex system run wild; Peter Menell, co-founder and director of The Berkeley Center for Law & Technology, and a leading authority on patent law and practice who opposes the Property Rights Movement; and Mark Blaxill and Ralph Eckardt, authors of The Invisible Edge, proponents of patent strategy for businesses and investors.
Blaxill and Eckardt are Managing Partners of 3LP Advisors, which advises Tessera (NASDAQ: TRSA), among the growing number of patent holders who actively monetize their R&D through patent licensing and litigation.
Moderating the debate will be your humble IP Insider, Bruce Berman.
States the IPBC program: “Some see [the patent system] as a crucial facilitator of innovation that underpins business success. Others are not so sure and regard it as an expensive hindrance to innovative companies.”
• Head-to-head debate
• Key assets or an expensive waste of time?
• Encouraging innovation or a brake on it taking place?
• Tweaking the system or fundamental reform
I hope some of you can make the IPBC in SF. Held previously in Munich, Chicago and Amsterdam, and hosted by UK-based IAM, the IP Business Congress is the most auspicious gathering for patent strategy and monetitzation.
This year’s Bay-area inspired presentations, discussions and networking are sure to entertain as well as enlighten.
Illustration source: IPBC