PIA Takes Advocacy Efforts to End Patent Troll Abuse to the White House
WASHINGTON, DC—February 21, 2014—Printing Industries of America attended a White House event yesterday to announce major progress on a series of initiatives launched last year to combat “patent trolls” and abusive patent litigation. Michael Makin, president and CEO of Printing Industries of America, accepted the invitation extended to the association by National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling and Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. Makin was represented at the event by Lisbeth A. Lyons, Printing Industries of America’s vice president of government affairs.
Senior administration officials offered updates on the status of the patent reform agenda. Patent Trademark Office Deputy Director Michelle Lee was among the speakers at the event. Following the speeches, Printing Industries of America was pleased to share the association’s policy positions directly with Lee. Yesterday’s engagement with the Obama Administration builds upon Printing Industries of America’s continued advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill, including testimony by president and CEO Michael Makin before the Senate Judiciary Committee last December.
Printing Industries of America’s overriding view continues to be that patent litigation reform legislation should demystify the patent process for end users—like printing companies—and ensure they are able to have less costly, less burdensome avenues with which to defend themselves. Such solutions include:
- Deterring patent troll activity by cracking down on deceptive behavior that accompanies bad faith demand letters.
- Protect customers who are targeted in patent infringement lawsuits by permitting the case against them to be stayed while the manufacturer litigates the alleged infringement.
- Reforming the patent litigation system to include new heightened pleading requirements, as well as increasing the transparency of patent ownership.
- Reducing the overall cost of abusive patent litigation by balancing discovery demands. This would empower more of our member companies to fight frivolous claims of infringement rather than settle, among other suggestions.
Following the event, Makin stated, “It’s clear that both the White House and Printing Industries of America agree that the economic damage of ‘patent trolls’ must be strongly combatted. It is our industry’s belief that both business and innovation drive the spirit and economy of this nation, and both should be protected from abusive patent trolls.”
Makin continued, “Keep in mind, that patent trolls do not innovate, do not promote economic growth, and do not contribute to the greater good of education or scientific research. Most importantly, patent trolls do not create jobs—our businesses do. And yet their actions threaten job creation and hinder entrepreneurship. We are encouraged by consensus on the problem and look forward to working with both the Executive and the Legislative Branches to forge commonsense, practical solutions that protect all users of the patent system.”
For more information about Printing Industries of America’s Government Affairs Department and presence on Capitol Hill, please visit www.printing.org/govaffairs.
About Printing Industries of America
Printing Industries of America is the world’s largest graphic arts trade association, representing an industry with approximately one million employees. It serves the interests of thousands of member companies. Together with its nationwide affiliate network, Printing Industries delivers products and services that enhance the growth, efficiency, and profitability of its members and the graphic communications industry through advocacy, education, research, and technical information.