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Page 1 of 3 Archive - October 2006

Farewell Florian

In what is a major blow to the campaign against the European Patent Litigation Agreement (EPLA) on the grounds that it will make it easier to introduce software patents into Europe, veteran campaigner Florian Mueller has announced that he is withdrawing from the political debate on the issue. Mueller was a highly effective critic of the CII Directive, rejected by the European Parliament last year, and his involvement in the debate over the EPLA meant that those who opposed it had a ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 30 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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Scottish technology companies advised to forget IP

In Scotland, it seems, technology businesses are being advised not to bother with intellectual property protection, but to concentrate instead on sales and marketing. If the report I read in today’s Sunday Herald is to be believed, eminent Scottish businessman David Sibbald said that applying for patent protection slows companies down and means they often lose out on opportunities. He was backed up by Fred Hallsworth, chairman of The Kelvin Institute and former head of the now ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 29 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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Ocean Tomo launches index, holds auction

It’s been a busy week for IP merchant banc, Ocean Tomo. On Wednesday it announced the creation of the Ocean Tomo 300 Patent Index, an equity index based on the value of companies’ patents. A day later, it held its second auction of intellectual property rights in New York. Both events attracted a great deal of coverage. Whether they were successful or not is not yet certain. The Patent Index is a fascinating idea. It is based on the notion that companies that own ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 28 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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UK court confirms software status quo and asks questions of EPO

The Court of Appeal in London has handed down its decision in the Macrossan v Comptroller General of Patents Designs and Trade Marks case, which related to the extent to which computer software is patentable in the United Kingdom. The appellant (Neal Macrossan) was unsuccessful in his attempt to overturn the High Court's decision upholding the original UK Patent Office decision to reject his patent application covering a computer-based system for incorporating companies. The ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 28 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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Interesting times for US patents

I have just come across a very interesting piece from the Houston Chronicle on how the Patent Reform Act 2006 may affect VCs in the United States. If nothing else, it goes to show how important knowledge of patent issues is to the venture capital industry these days. The article focuses on the possible replacement of first-to-invent with first-to file, but it could have looked at a number of changes to the US patent system the proposed legislation, co-sponsored by Senators Hatch and ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 28 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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Big Blue bites to show licensing model is not dead yet

There is something oddly comforting about the news that IBM has launched a patent infringement suit against Amazon.com. In proceedings initiated on Monday, the company alleges that Amazon.com has infringed five of its patents relating to key features of the on-line retailer’s offering, including customer recommendations, advertising and data storage. At a time when Big Blue is reworking its entire IP strategy to make it more relevant to the company’s new business model - ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 25 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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Chinese companies spending more time in US courts

Another piece in the FT, this time on how Chinese companies are increasingly to be seen as plaintiffs and defendants in US patent cases. For those who are optimistic about China’s long-term IP development, it is another healthy sign. Being involved in US patent litigation is a very effective way of getting a thorough IP education. Boards of directors begin to appreciate what IP can do for their businesses and what can happen if IP is not properly looked after. It’s a ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 23 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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We’re all crooks and that’s bad news for rights owners

There’s a great article in today’s Financial Times about middle class crime in Britain. Apparently, we are all at it. Or most of us anyway. And I am pretty sure that what applies in Britain applies equally in most of the rest of the world. The article mentions counterfeiting and piracy but does not dwell on them. However, the general message spells out just what a challenge IP owners face when it comes to IP crime. The fact is that buying fakes and illegal copies of ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 21 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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OceanTomo prepares for Auction 2 and sets sights on Europe

It’s less than a week now until the second OceanTomo intellectual property auction takes place in New York City. The first one, which took place in San Francisco in April, has to be counted a major success for this self-styled IP merchant banc. Even though the figures generated by the sale were not huge, the publicity surrounding the event was enormous and saw the OceanTomo named blazed across not only specialist IP and technology related media outlets, but also the mainstream ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 20 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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More on KSR International Co v Teleflex Inc – this is a big one

I had lunch with Rob Sterne of Sterne Kessler Goldstein & Fox today (at Luigino, a very good Washington DC restaurant I can heartily recommend). Rob is heavily involved in the upcoming Supreme Court case of KSR International Co v Teleflex Inc et al, and is working on behalf of the respondents Teleflex. Having spent a good hour and a half going through the issues with him, I think it would be hard to overstate their importance. Essentially, what KSR is asking the Court to do is ...

Posted by Joff Wild, IAM Magazine on 18 October 2006 @ 12:00AM
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