Over the past 15 years, court decisions have weakened patent protections in the US. While some academics support such weakening, the evidence suggests that it may be having a detrimental effect on innovation.
Property rights are an essential economic institution. As the great UCLA economist Harold Demsetz famously argued, property rights spur specialization, investment, and competition, which in turn increase productivity, innovation, and wealth throughout the economy.
Contrary to established Supreme Court precedent, the district court’s decision relies on mere inferences to establish anticompetitive effect. The decision, if it stands, would render a wide range of potentially procompetitive conduct presumptively illegal and thus harm consumer welfare.
TOTM: The following is the eighth in a series of posts by TOTM guests and authors on the FTC v. Qualcomm case recently decided by Judge Lucy Koh in the Northern District of California. The blog post is based on a forthcoming paper regarding patent holdup, co-authored by Dirk Auer and Julian Morris.
The courtroom trial in the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) antitrust case against Qualcomm ended in January with a promise from the judge in the case, Judge Lucy Koh, to issue a ruling as quickly as possible — caveated by her acknowledgement that the case is complicated and the evidence voluminous.
An important but unheralded announcement was made on October 10, 2018: The European Committee for Standardization (CEN) and the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC) released a draft CEN CENELAC Workshop Agreement (CWA) on the licensing of Standard Essential Patents (SEPs) for 5G/Internet of Things (IoT) applications.