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U.S. not doing enough to protect against patent trolls, survey says

Nearly three-quarters of chief IP counsel expect to be litigating with patent trolls within the next year

It’s no secret that patent trolls have become a major headache for in-house counsel. Now, a new study from Consero Group shows that nearly three-quarters of chief IP counsel are facing imminent courtroom battles with non-practicing entities, and that governments worldwide may not be doing enough to help in that fight.

Of the respondents polled in the 2013 Chief IP Counsel Survey, 74 percent say that they are either litigating against patent trolls or expect to be within the next year. A full 100 percent said that they expect patent litigation to either increase or hold steady during that time.

“While the rise of patent trolls is a well-documented reality facing Chief IP Counsel worldwide, the extent of patent-troll litigation revealed by our survey was surprising,” Paul Mandell, founder and CEO of Consero, said in a press release. “With Chief IP Counsel expecting patent litigation to remain steady or rise in the year ahead, they will likely need more resources over time.”

Most IP lawyers (94%) believe that their companies’ leaders understand the importance of IP protection. But intellectual property may not be getting the same protection from the U.S. and foreign governments: Ninety-one percent of respondents said that the U.S. is not doing enough to protect corporations against patent trolls, and 51 percent feel that federal government protection against copyright and trademark infringement is inadequate.

When it comes to foreign governments, 100 percent of respondents said that emerging markets were not adequately protecting foreign companies against counterfeiting. The silver lining? More than half of those surveyed said that foreign governments have improved their IP protection efforts since last year.

For more survey results, click here.

And for more InsideCounsel coverage of IP issues, read:

IP: Trolls to freeze in their tracks? Not likely.

IP: How not to drown in the dynamic IP ocean

Zynga sues over “Bang with Friends” app

9th Circuit OKs Dish Network’s commercial-skipping technology

Supreme Court’s decision in Myriad sends shockwaves through the biotech industry

Alanna Byrne

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