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The End of Collaborative Innovation: Is the Erosion of Patent Rights Threatening Open Innovation?

Marc Ehrlich and Richard Ludwin

©2018. Published in Landslide, Vol. 11, No. 1, September/October 2018, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.

These are heady times for some intellectual property (IP) advocates in technology and academia. A coalition of like-minded parties has leveraged the misdeeds of certain nonpracticing entities (pejoratively referred to as patent trolls) to successfully bring about a significant erosion in the strength of U.S. patents. Many of the voices in this part of the IP community argue that a broken U.S. patent system threatens open intercompany collaborative innovation, the engine that has generated the dizzying panoply of technological innovations we have seen in the last few decades.1

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