whats known and unknown

House passes Innovation Act by vote of 325-91: a small solution to a big patent problem

on December 6, 2013


The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed the Innovation Act, a bill to reform an American patent system now plagued by a glut of low quality patents and by “trolls,” which are shell companies that make a business of filing nuisance lawsuits against productive businesses.

The bill, which passed with bipartisan support, will now go to the Senate, where it is expected to pass and to the White House, which is also in favor. But if the Innovation Act becomes law, will it actually do anything to fix a patent system that a prominent judge has described as “dysfunctional?” Recall that Congress also passed “patent reform” in 2011 to  little practical effect.

Here’s an overview of what the Innovation Act does — and doesn’t do — to fix the patent mess.

New rules to reduce “smash-and-grab” patent trolling

Trolling is so attractive in the first place…

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