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Page 1 of 3 Archive - February 2009

There's more to IV than meets the eye

The IP Biz blog links to a magnificent rant from Matt Asay, which neatly ties in Microsoft's litigation with Tom Tom and the announcement by Intellectual Ventures of its latest patent-related deal. "Intellectual Ventures, arguably the world's largest patent troll," wites Asay, "is set up to do nothing more than license its intellectual property". And to be fair, it is a view that is expressed commonly enough. However, it may be an opinion that will ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 27 February 2009 @ 5:16PM
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Microsoft is in a fight with Tom Tom not open source

As you would expect, Microsoft's decision to sue Tom Tom for patent infringement has garnered an awful lot of press coverage - far too much for me to link to here (just do the Google search to find out how much there is). I am sure that everyone knows what is at issue in the case, but in broad terms Microsoft is alleging that Tom Tom products, some of which are Linux-based, infringe on up to eight of its patents. "We have an established intellectual property licensing program, ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 27 February 2009 @ 11:05AM
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New US patent reform legislation proposals set to be announced next week?

I got a note last night from a well-informed contact in Washington DC that new patent reform legislation could be presented in Congress as early as next Monday, 2nd March. There is no indication as to what provisions the new proposals might contain, but obviously one thing everybody will be looking out for is what they say about damages apportionment. I got this quote on the subject from the Manufacturing Alliance on Patent Policy: "Manufacturing jobs and R&D investment ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 26 February 2009 @ 11:13AM
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New report identifies the world's most IP-friendly country, but trademarks are ignored

Germany is the country which offers the best protection for intellectual property rights, according to a new study that was released yesterday. The International Property Rights Index 2009, published by the Property Rights Alliance, claims to show "that countries that protect the physical and intellectual property of their people enjoy nearly nine times higher GDP per capita than countries ranking lowest in property rights protections". In 2008 Finland came out on top ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 25 February 2009 @ 11:23AM
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Let's keep the software patent debate on the straight and narrow

Courtesy of the IPJur blog comes news of funding for an End Software Patents project that will, according to a press release, provide a catalogue of “studies, economic arguments, and legal analyses” to “build on the recent success of the "in re Bilski" court ruling, in which End Software Patents (ESP) helped play a key role in narrowing the scope for patenting software ideas in the USA”. According to Free Software Foundation spokesman Ciaran ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 24 February 2009 @ 7:50PM
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Obama will disappoint anyone looking for a lighter touch in US international IP policy

Over on the Huffington Post James Love is none too impressed about a recent IP-related trip several Obama administration officials made to Geneva along with a delegation comprising members of Congress, Capitol Hill staffers and USPTO officials made to Geneva. Quoting what he terms "an amazing story" on the IP-Watch site, Love reports that the delegation held a series of meetings with senior figures at WHO, WIPO and the WTO, before sitting ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 23 February 2009 @ 4:32PM
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The solution to the US's patent problems are international, says former USPTO chief

“There was never a country that I went to that the USPTO did not have something to learn from,” says Jon Dudas of his time as the office’s Director. It quickly became pretty obvious when I interviewed him last week that after six years in charge - with all the worldwide travel and meetings with senior officials from other patent offers which this entailed - Dudas is convinced that many of the challenges the US faces over patent pendency and quality, for example, are ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 21 February 2009 @ 11:20AM
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Microsoft IP boss gets a promotion

Horacio Gutierrez, up to now Vice-president for IP and Licensing at Microsoft, has been promoted, according to a report published in a Seattle newspaper. He now holds an Executive VP role at the company. Gutierrez is the second executive VP with an IP brief at Microsoft. Marshall Phelps, whose responsibilities are on the strategy and policy side, is the other one. This tells us a lot about the emphasis the company's board is now placing on the IP as a facilitative value ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 20 February 2009 @ 12:36PM
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Community trademark office is the latest to feel the downturn heat

The Community trademark is something of a rarity: a great European IP success story. Granted by the Office for the Harmonisation of the Internal Market (OHIM) in Alicante, Spain, CTMs have grown in popularity almost every year since they were fist granted back in the late 1990s. Armed with a CTM, a company can enforce its mark in every member state of the EU via a unitary court system that applies a single set of laws. What would patent owners give for a similar ability? But, it ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 19 February 2009 @ 5:23PM
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Specialist IP firms under threat in the US?

The signals are there that law IP firms that rely on the billable hour/leverage model appear poised to experience significant stress from clients and critics in the near future. Those relying on this model for their livelihood would be well-served to look for innovative ways to address this changing environment. In short, those who think that the billable hour/leverage law firm model will escape the transformative business innovations of the current era are merely "whistling past ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 17 February 2009 @ 5:05PM
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