Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Innovation Alliance Sends Open Letter to Congress

Members of the Innovation Alliance – including more than 100 signatories - sent a letter to key lawmakers in the US House of Representatives and US Senate to urge a more cautious and deliberate approach to patent reform. Members of the alliance include universities, venture capital firms, research parks, large companies and small and mid-sized companies representing the electronics, telecommunications, life sciences, computer hardware, financial services, chemical and biotechnology industries.

The letter, which was addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader John Boehner, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, expressed concern with certain provisions of The Patent Reform Act of 2007 (H.R. 1908/S. 1145):

We . . . support The Innovation Agenda’s call to improve intellectual property protections, strengthen the patent system, and end the diversion of patent fees. To that end, we welcome the leadership of Chairman Howard Berman and Chairman Patrick Leahy in working to address several of the patent reform suggestions outlined by the National Academies and others in their recently introduced legislation. However, we strongly believe that certain provisions, such as those dealing with apportionment of monetary damages for patent infringement, expansive PTO rule making authority, an open-ended post grant opposition system, and a narrow grace period will not
strengthen our patent system but instead will fundamentally undermine patent certainty, discourage investment in innovative technologies, and reduce publication and collaborative activities among academic scientists.

Read/download letter here.

(Special thanks to Bryan Lord for the heads-up)

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