Call on the U.S. Commerce Department and USPTO to Continue Bipartisan SEP Policies

22 April 2019. We write to address suggestions that USPTO consider withdrawal from the 2013 “Policy Statement on Remedies for Standards-Essential Patents Subject to Voluntary F/RAND Commitments” (2013 Policy Statement). As a number of our signatories explained in their January 31, 2019 letter to the agencies, we oppose the USPTO withdrawing from the 2013 Policy Statement, as that statement reflects sound, tested and longstanding American law and policy.1 We write now to respond to two letters sent to the agencies by four companies active in SEP licensing and allied trade associations on March 15 and March 18, 2019.

Our signatories help fuel the American innovation economy. Collectively, we represent over $100B annually in R&D spending across a range of industries. We own hundreds of thousands of patents, including many standard essential patents (SEPs). We employ more than 50 million Americans, and contribute trillions of dollars to annual United States GDP. Many of our signatories are headquartered in the U.S., and others have extensive U.S. operations. We also include many small business signatories, who deserve to compete and innovate on a level playing field. Our companies both develop and use standards, and we also innovate on top of standards to create products and services that are widely used across the US economy, providing a balanced perspective to these issues. We request your support in continuing longstanding U.S. policy to promote the development and utilization of technical standards, as well as to incentivize stakeholders to innovate on top of standardized technologies.

 

Download full letter here.

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