The Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust, and Consumer Rights held a hearing yesterday titled “Big Data, Big Questions: Implications for Competition and Consumers,” in which both Republican and Democratic senators pushed representatives of Facebook and Google to answer difficult questions about their platforms’ impact on everything from competitive marketplaces to teenagers’ body image. The hearing is one in a series that aims to conduct a bipartisan review of America’s competition issues, according to Subcommittee Chair, Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).
This week in tech and innovation hearings in Washington, D.C., the House of Representatives explores issues related to emerging cyber threats, Facebook’s cryptocurrency and its impact on the financial sector, space weather research and supporting clean automobile developments. House committees will also hold two field hearings outside of D.C. on improving Internet connectivity in rural communities and community initiatives in smart mobility programs. In the Senate, committee hearings will focus on ownership of personal data, international energy efficiency efforts and the reauthorization of compulsory copyright licenses for satellite broadcasts under STELAR. Elsewhere, Cato Institute will host an event looking at advances to space technology encouraged by the private sector, while the week closes out with an event at The Heritage Foundation discussing the effect of data surveillance on Fourth Amendment protections.
Management of trade secrets is fraught with competing interests. There is the tradeoff between security and inconvenience—for example, the annoying wait for a special code to allow “two-factor identification” when you already have your password handy. There is trusting your employees while knowing they might leave to join a competitor. And there is the tension between corporate secrecy and the public interest, such as when the fire department insists on knowing what toxic chemicals are used in your facility. And now we have the cloud (like “internet,” its ubiquity merits lower case), which offers unparalleled convenience and flexibility to outsource corporate data management to others. But moving IT functions outside the enterprise creates new vulnerabilities for that data, which happens to be the fastest growing and most valuable category of commercial assets. So understanding this environment has to be a high priority for business managers.
Join Gene Quinn, President and CEO of IPWatchdog, Inc., for a free webinar discuss that will focus on the importance of evolving an IP strategy to stay relevant, and steps that can be taken by those in-house and outside patent practitioners to adjust with changing technology and market realities. Joining Gene will be Carlo Cotrone, Senior Legal Strategist and IP Corporate Counsel at Baker Hughes, a GE Company.
In recent weeks we’ve learned that U.S. patent models are beginning to find a new audience in China’s growing inventor class. The Chinese expect the exhibits to raise awareness on innovation and patent protection among Chinese residents and to help build an innovative economy.
Among members of the news media, patents have been a popular whipping boy when contemplating why Americans pay higher drug prices relative to the rest of the world. Meanwhile, the Chinese national government extended the period of exclusivity on pharmaceutical patents from 20 years up to 25 years. While China makes moves to embrace further innovation in the pharmaceutical sector by extending exclusivity for drug developers, the United States has evidenced an incredible amount of skepticism regarding the activities of pharmaceutical patent owners trying to protect their property.
Instead of following the same IP plan year after year, IP managers should focus their strategy on aligning their IP with their business, including developing a more concise IP plan, and switch to using smarter and modern analytics… IP managers must: (1) Start with the end in mind: IP is the business; (2) Build a plan, measure and manage and continuous improvement; and (3) Create an environment where your IP and business execs have access to timely actionable intelligence to support their decisions and strategies.
To get the case off the ground, the court will decide whether Equifax can be sued in the first place – it’s tricky, because different federal circuits disagree about when this can happen. So, courts in Delaware, Illinois and Washington DC (for example) would allow the plaintiffs to proceed merely because their data is at risk after a hack. This is pretty easy to show. On the other hand though, New York, Conneticut and North Carolina would need to see not just a leak, but that the leaked data has actually been misused afterwards. Equifax HQ is in Atlanta, the 11th circuit. Although those courts have a history of recognising that difficulty (and so supporting data victim lawsuits), it hasn’t yet come down firmly on the question of risk vs misuse.
Although law firms have traditionally been slow to adopt technology, a 2015 survey conducted by Williams Lea Tag and Sandpiper Partners LLC reported that 64 percent of law firms now believe investing in technology is a priority. Attorneys are using technology to personalize connections with clients, automatically update legal documents, and improve operational efficiency—all of which frees up valuable time for client work, according to Law Technology Today. This is especially true for IP attorneys as they are on the front lines of technological growth. However, rather than implementing a variety of disparate solutions and falling victim to application gluttony, IP attorneys need an enterprise class solution that provides the breadth of capabilities needed to perform the exacting task of IP prosecution and management.
The breadth and scale of information now available to IP departments was previously unimaginable and using this information to drive insight remains challenging. The most progressive organizations will use insight from their own IP portfolio and the portfolio of others to drive the entire shape and direction of their business. The role of the future IP professional will be less about reactively protecting the innovation that a company creates, and more about using their unique insight to shape future product and service development, geographical expansion and even the future direction of research and development. In the four key phases of IP management – creation, protection, management and optimization – new technology, automation, data availability and collaboration are combining to shape IP management strategy.
In creating a privacy and security plan, IOT companies should be mindful of regulatory enforcement for failure to fully comply with their own advertised practices. For example, companies should honor representations made to consumers regarding privacy and security practices, or risk regulatory scrutiny. If not, the FTC may bring an enforcement action, which it did against IOT company, TRENDnet, Inc. According to the FTC, TRENDnet failed to implement reasonable security practices, monitor security vulnerability reports from third parties, test and review potential security vulnerabilities, and implement reasonable guidance for its employees, and thus was in violation of Section 5(a) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a). The case settled, and the terms of the settlement prohibited TRENDnet from misrepresenting its privacy and security practices and required it to establish a comprehensive security risk program.
On Wednesday, October 26, 2016 at 2pm ET, please join Gene Quinn (IPWatchdog) and Monty Wright (VP of IP Assets for GE Ventures Licensing) for a discussion on how IPW professionals can become more agile and profitable by using intelligence derived from big data. Whether you are representing clients or attempting to deliver results for your company, the insights waiting to be discovered both with respect to your in-house landscape and from a competitive intelligence standpoint are great.
Customers, myself included, are used to the customer-centric technologies experienced in other ‘digitized’ sectors like publishing or music – these have had to adapt to the digital revolution early. Customers now want that experience replicated in the FS sector. Banks, for example, are beginning to take notice, investing significant amounts of money in IT upgrades: Australia’s Commonwealth Bank invested over AUD $1.1 billion in an end-to-end IT transformation project to replace its aging core banking system and Barclays has been promoting customer-centric technologies like the mobile payments app PingIt for many years.
As anyone who’s worked at a law firm can attest, lawyers at a firm use each others’ experience to inform their strategy in a given case. Firm-wide emails asking if anyone has appeared in front of a particular judge or tribunal are routine and allow lawyers to benefit from the insights their colleagues provide. Big data analytics allow lawyers to gather this same information, but on a much larger scale. For instance, analytics platforms allow attorneys to view their judge’s complete history, including every decision issued and every case cited, to identify the legal precedent the judge finds most persuasive.
The disparity between the art units is confused even more so when we consider the total number of Alice rejections in each art unit, rather than just counting the total number of applications receiving an Alice rejection. Doing that, we can see that, while 3622 and 3623 have almost equal numbers of applications with Alice rejections, 3623 actually has more in total. This means that applications in that art unit are more likely to receive multiple Alice rejections and take longer to prosecute.