Patent Trolls Hold Up Tech Innovation, Industry Leaders Tell House

"Patent trolls" are holding back innovation in the tech industry under current IP law. That’s the argument that tech industry execs presented to House lawmakers in recent hearings. Criticism was directed in particular at the current patent system, under which companies use their claims to broad patents to sue other companies rather than delivering products or services based on the innovation described in the patent. Witnesses asked Congress to rewrite the 1998 Digital Millennium Copyright Act to include expanded “safe harbor” provisions and a more generous interpretation of the fair use doctrine that permits the repurposing of pieces of proprietary content. Dealing with the patent troll issue is viewed as one of the most important potential policy changes for future tech innovation.

John Howell, Editorial Director

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