Today, we attended a hearing held on Capitol Hill by the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy, and Consumer Rights regarding standard-essential patents.  The hearing, titled “Standard Essential Patent Disputes and Antitrust Law,” featured testimony from four witnesses from diverse SEP-related backgrounds.

CapitolPatent assertions by non-practicing entities have been garnering much of the patent-related attention on Capitol Hill, but standard-essential patents are also in the mix.  Next week, the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy, and Consumer Rights is scheduled to have a hearing on “Standard Essential Patent Disputes and Antitrust Law.”  The hearing

This afternoon, the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet held a hearing titled “Abusive Patent Litigation: The Issues Impacting American Competitiveness and Job Creation at the International Trade Commission and Beyond.”  This hearing comes on the heels of a broader hearing on abusive patent litigation held by the same committee two months ago, as well as a different hearing in July 2012 that generally addressed the ITC’s role in deciding patent disputes.  Several witnesses representing a variety of diverse backgrounds and interests testified today before the subcommittee, including:

  • Kevin Rhodes, VP and Chief IP Counsel for 3M Innovative Properties Co.
  • Jon Dudas, Former Director of the USPTO (and a member of the board of non-practicing entity MOSAID Technologies)
  • Prof. Colleen Chien of Santa Clara University
  • Russell Binns, Associate General Counsel for IP Law & Litigation at Avaya
  • Deanna Tanner Okun, Former Chairwoman of the ITC (and a partner at Adduci Mastriani & Schaumberg)
  • David Foster, Chairman of the Legislative Committee for the ITC Trial Lawyers Association (and a partner at Foster, Murphy, Altman & Nickel)

A link to the video webcast of the full hearing is available at the House Judiciary Committee’s website, along with PDFs of each witness’s prepared testimony.  Our friends at Patent Progress also live-tweeted the event — take a look at their Twitter feed @PatentProgress for their blow-by-blow account.

As we anticipated, while standard-essential patents were not the focus of this particular hearing, the issue of SEPs was indeed given some attention.  In his opening remarks, Congressman Melvin Watt noted concerns some have expressed about the potential for improper usage of standard-essential patents in seeking injunctive relief, and Congressman Ted Poe briefly quizzed Prof. Chien about the propriety of asserting standard-essential patents in the ITC. 
Continue Reading House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on abusive patent litigation and the ITC focuses on non-practicing entities, litigation costs, and remedies

CapitolPatents have been getting a lot of attention on Capitol Hill lately, with the reintroduced SHIELD Act and the recent Congressional hearing on “abusive patent litigation.”  Next week patents will get even more airtime, as the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet will hold a hearing titled Abusive

ITC LogoThis morning, at the U.S. International Trade Commission, the hearing commenced in In the Matter of Certain Wireless Devices with 3G Capabilities and Components Thereof (Inv. No. 337-TA-800) before presiding Administrative Law Judge David. P. Shaw.  This case involves the ITC’s investigation into allegations brought by InterDigital that respondents Huawei, Nokia, and ZTE