Sunday, April 24, 2016

Study: Lawsuits Down, But Non-Practicing Entities Buying Patents At 'Steady Rate'; Forbes, 4/21/16

Michael Carroll, Forbes; Study: Lawsuits Down, But Non-Practicing Entities Buying Patents At 'Steady Rate' :
"The amount of patent-infringement litigation took a noticeable dip in the first quarter of this year compared to the same time period in previous years, but whether the numbers reflect a true downturn rather than a temporary hiccup remains to be seen – especially considering prospective plaintiffs are still amassing patents at their normal rate.
That’s the conclusion of an analysis of patent litigation volume reported by RPX Corp., a patent aggregator that helps clients manage and mitigate risks associated with patent-infringement lawsuits.
The company tracks litigation by non-practicing entities, or NPEs – those who hold patents and launch patent-infringement lawsuits against people or companies for allegedly using or profiting from an element of the patents the NPE holds. As a rule, NPEs obtain patents for products but don’t develop or market them.
Some refer to NPEs as “patent trolls.” RPX has spent more than $2 billion to acquire more than 15,000 patents in order to help companies avoid litigation. They both purchase patents before they can be obtained by non-practicing entities that will target their clients with lawsuits and obtain patents from NPEs after a lawsuit has been filed."

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