There are rumors and plans on the table to change how the Patent System in the United States operates. Will this mean that companies will not be able to patent the rounded rectangle??? It is more than obvious that reform needs to happen as two of the greatest innovators Google and Apple each spend more on Patent Litigation than they do on Research and Development.
The America Invents Act was passed into law late last year and its most fundamental change is the move from “First to Invent” to “First Inventor to File” and the changes are set to come into effect in early March 2013. The problem is…it really doesn’t go far enough to change the fact that each year more than 4000 patent suits are filed and many of these come from Patent Trolls that have amassed huge patent portfolios with absolutely no intention to manufacture or research the ideas and concepts contained in the patent.
This has become nothing more than Corporate Bullying and there needs to be far more whole scale change in not only what can be filed (a rounded rectangle really Apple) to how the patent is actually filed and for how long innovation can be held hostage.
The technology world is standing at a chasm right now. Some may even say that the “Dark Ages 2.0” is a real possibility and if we are going to legislate how business and Intellectual Property is administered then it is time to make that change RIGHT NOW. Tear up the old and start fresh. The Patent System itself was never meant to be what it has become.
Just my two cents.
Chris J Powell