The Coalition for Patent Fairness has a new website, new content and a new blog – the Better Mouse Trap Blog – that will follow developments relating to patent reform.  The Coalition for Patent Fairness issued this statement:

“Deficiencies in our patent system are holding our economy back by dampening innovation and job creation. Congress needs to pass a bipartisan and comprehensive patent reform bill to modernize and reduce uncertainty in the current system by addressing the backlog of patent applications in the patent office, ensuring only proper patents are being granted, and creating an environment where small, medium and large companies can innovate and create jobs. Our revised website will communicate that message and serve as a source of information for policy makers, business leaders, consumers and journalists interested in patent reform.”

The Better Mouse Trap Blog is supposed to track legislative and regulatory developments, highlight member company activity, and deliver filter-free pro-patent reform messages to interested audiences, which seems like an oxymoron.  While they have an agenda, we’re certain people will take away what they want.

The Coalition web site states that:

 Companies, both large and small, are being forced to shift their time and resources to responding to questionable patent infringement lawsuits and away from job creation and innovation. Engineers are spending more time in courtrooms than in the labs focusing on good science, new products and imaginative solutions.

The patent system must be modernized to keep pace with today’s global economy. …  New federal legislation is urgently needed to strengthen and reform patent law, both to improve patent quality and to deter abuse of the system.

Ironically, a recent post on the blog site mentions that Microsoft, a CPF member, received its 10,000th patent earlier this month and has risen to the “top 5 among patent recipients.  Microsoft chief patent counsel Bart Eppenauer told CNET News that “Logging the 10,000th patent really is a testament to all of the innovation that has been taking place.”

CNET then goes on to turn this milestone into a reform statement noting that while Microsoft’s patent filings have been up, the  number of patent lawsuits against the company has increased substantially.  According to the article, most of the suits did not come not from other technology companies.  Eppenauer claims that the lawsuits are mostly from the companies who do not make products and whose primary business is acquiring and enforcing patent.

Left unsaid is how much cross-licensing with other large tech companies plays into that result.

See more at the Better Mouse Trap Blog.  Additional comments over at Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog.

Other opinions at:

Coalition for 21st Century Patent Reform
Manufacturers Alliance on Patent Policy
Innovation Alliance
Progress & Freedom Foundation

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  1. “According to the article, most of the suits did not come not from other technology companies. Eppenauer claims that the lawsuits are mostly from the companies who do not make products…”

    well let’s see, if the company that sued them created the technology they sued over, they must then be a technology company. what corporate double speak!

    please see for a different/opposing view on patent reform

  2. The Coalition for Patent Fairness made a recent addition to the patent blogosphere with their new venture—Building a Better Mousetrap. The Coalition members, which include international tech companies such as Microsoft, Google and Dell, argue that “We’d be able to do more, create more jobs, innovate and create more products if [we] weren’t saddled with unjustified patent infringement charges and costly litigation.”

    Unfortunately, this line of argument is just like a piece of cheese lying out in the open—luring people towards the promise of more jobs without realizing there is a trap!

    Job creation is critical during this economic crisis, and strengthening – not weakening – intellectual property is the way to do it. Says who? Many diverse American institutions including the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Arizona Small Business Association, the Association of American Universities, and the National MS Society have all joined together to propose reforms to the patent system that will strengthen American intellectual property, encourage and protect American invention and help create new jobs at home. These labor, university and patient groups are all working as one to ensure that the U.S. maintain its competitive advantage of ingenuity and creativity that will spur the economy in difficult times.

    “Building a Better Mousetrap” focuses on the big cheeses that run international tech corporations and the banks that back them, rather than creating a sustainable economy for everyday Americans. Loosening patent restrictions in the short term will not sustain American jobs in the long term and saying as much is misleading.

    Besides, everyone knows to catch a mouse you use peanut butter, not cheese.

    Jim Greenwood,
    BIO President and CEO