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Obama Targets ‘Patent Trolls’ in a Bid to Protect Tech Innovation

June 05, 2013

Michael Sacksteder, a partner in Fenwick & West’s patent litigation group, is quoted in an LA Times article titled “Obama Targets ‘Patent Trolls’ in a Bid to Protect Tech Innovation.”

President Obama issued five executive orders aimed at dealing with the growing problem of “patent trolls” and protecting innovation. The orders call for new rules that would require disclosure of patent owners and more rigorous examination of patent applicants, as well as legislation that would make it more difficult for non-practicing entities to file suit.

While the industry has praised the president’s recent actions, Sacksteder says that stopping patent trolls without impeding the rights of patent holders will be a complicated endeavor. “It is difficult to surgically target just patent trolls, however you define that,” he said.

Sacksteder says that while the president’s actions are positive, congressional action is necessary to provide more comprehensive solutions. Pointing to the fact that it took years to enact sweeping patent reform in 2011, he says that patent troll legislation will take a lot of time and effort.