The Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice will hold a joint public workshop on Dec. 10, 2012, to explore the impact of patent assertion entity (PAE) activities on innovation and competition and the implications for antitrust enforcement and policy.
This workshop will examine the economic and legal implications of PAE activity, as distinct from prototypical “non-practicing entity” (NPE) activity, such as developing and transferring technology. By contrast, PAE activities often include purchasing patents from existing owners and seeking to maximize revenues by licensing the intellectual property to (or litigating against) manufacturers who are already using the patented technology.
Supporters of the PAE business model say that it facilitates the transfer of patent rights, rewards inventors and funds ongoing research and development efforts. Critics describe adverse effects on competition and innovation, including increased costs and a lack of technology transfer, ultimately taxing consumers and industry.
The workshop will provide a forum for industry participants, academics, economists, lawyers and other interested parties to discuss the economic and legal analyses of PAE activity. It will consist of a series of panels examining, among other topics, the legal treatment of PAE activity, economic theories concerning PAE activity and industry experiences. Panelists for the workshop will include academics, private attorneys, economists and industry representatives.
The FTC and Department of Justice are interested in receiving comments on PAE activities and will accept written submissions from the public before the workshop and until March 10, 2013. Interested parties may submit public comments to: ATR.LPS-PAEPublicComments@usdoj.gov. Submitted comments will be made publicly available on the Department of Justice and FTC websites.
Based on RSVP responses, we will have a full house. We strongly encourage anyone who has not sent in an RSVP to view the event on our webcast, available here.
The workshop will take place at the FTC’s satellite conference center at 601 New Jersey Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST on Dec. 10, 2012. Additional participants will be added to the agenda as they are confirmed. Updates to the agenda will be posted on the FTC and Department of Justice websites. The workshop will include the following panels, presentations and confirmed participants:
9:00 a.m. – Opening Remarks: FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz
SESSION A: FRAMEWORK
9:15 a.m. – Lecture 1: Introduction to PAE Activity
Colleen Chien, Assistant Professor of Law, Santa Clara University School of Law
9:35 a.m. – Lecture 2: Introduction to PAE Licensing
Carl Shapiro, Transamerica Professor of Business Strategy, University of California at Berkeley, Walter A. Hass School of Business
10:05 a.m. – Q & A with Professors Chien and Shapiro
BREAK (10:20 - 10:30 a.m.)
10:30 a.m. – Panel 1: Realities of Licensing and Litigation Practices
LUNCH (12:00 - 1:15 p.m.)
1:15 p.m. – Remarks
Stuart Graham, Chief Economist, U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
Session B: Potential Efficiencies and Harms from PAE ACTIVITY: Effects on competition and innovation
1:45 p.m. – Academic Introduction to Potential Efficiencies from PAE Activity
Timothy Simcoe, Assistant Professor of Strategy and Innovation, School of Management, Boston University
Panel 1: Potential Efficiencies from PAE Activity
Academic Introduction to Potential Harms from PAE Activity
Iain Cockburn, Professor of Finance and Economics and Everett W. Lord Distinguished Faculty Scholar, School of Management, Boston University
Panel 2: Potential Harms from PAE Activity
Panel 3: Industry Reaction
BREAK (3:45 - 4:00 p.m.)
SESSION C: HOW DOES ANTITRUST APPLY TO THE POTENTIAL EFFICIENCIES AND HARMS GENERATED BY PAE ACTIVITY
4:00 p.m. – Academic Introduction
Phillip Malone, Clinical Professor of Law, Harvard Law School; Clinical Co-Director and Senior Fellow, Berkman Center for Internet & Society, Harvard Law School
4:20 p.m. – Panel Discussion
5:00 p.m. – Q & A
5:20 p.m. – Closing Remarks: Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division Renata B. Hesse
Directions to the FTC’s Conference Center are available at /bcp/workshops/transportationguide.shtml.
Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Requests should be submitted via email to email@example.com or by calling Samantha Konstandt at 202-326-3348. Requests should be made in advance. Please include a detailed description of the accommodation needed and provide contact information.
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