Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) has introduced the Innovation Act of 2013, a bill designed to curb the activities of so-called “patent trolls.” Patent trolls have caused much unease in the broadcast community by initiating lawsuits concerning digital programming automation and podcasting.
The bill looks to be receiving bipartisan support. There are several similar bills in the House and Senate.
NAB Executive Vice President of Communications Dennis Wharton said: “For too long, U.S. economic growth has been stifled by ‘patent trolls’ who game the legal system with frivolous patent litigation. America’s hometown broadcasters look forward to working with Chairman Goodlatte and other House and Senate leaders to pass legislation that will deter patent abuses that are a drain on American businesses.”
The CEA’s President and CEO Gary Shapiro said: “Frivolous patent litigation is a massive problem and it is getting worse. Patent trolling had ballooned into a billion dollar industry dedicated to punishing innovators, undermining the integrity of the patent system, killing jobs and damaging our economy. This bill contains smart and targeted reforms that will help promote continued innovation in the U.S. and make life difficult for those who seek to abuse our patent system.”