August 27, 2013 Articles

New Legislation Helps in the Fight Against Patent Trolls

By Hilda C. Galvan

“They’re just trying to . . . hijack somebody else’s idea and see if they can extort some money out of them.” “Hijack” and “extort” are rather strong words to use to describe any situation, but they seem particularly strong words for President Obama to have used to describe the activities of Patent Assertion Entities (PAEs).

These strong words, however, reflect the growing frustration felt by companies—high-tech and low-tech, small, medium, and large—that are regularly sued for patent infringement by PAEs. They reflect the growing frustration felt by consumers, who indirectly bear the cost of these lawsuits. And they reflect the frustration felt by members of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches, who have been unable to find a solution to the growing number of patent-infringement lawsuits filed by PAEs and the staggering costs associated with these lawsuits.

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