2099 inventors in the U.S. published a letter on 19 FEB 2014 strongly objecting to the “Innovation Act” H.R. 3309 because:
• Independent Inventors were not allowed to testify on the bill
• Alleged infringers would be able to delay proceedings for years by demanding that the Patent Office re-examine the validity of an issued patent two, three or even more times.
• Judges would have to make crucial decisions about the meaning of a patent claim before the opposing sides have collected factual evidence through the discovery process.
• Inventors who file lawsuits would be required to pay the other side’s attorney fees if they lose, significantly raising the stakes for those that can least afford it.
The letter describes the 5 week passage of H.R. 3309 as a “headlong rush” and states:
“This will be devastating to the American economy as independent inventors and path-breaking entrepreneurs account for a huge share of the nation’s innovation, which in turn is the engine of our growth and prosperity. The Commerce Department estimates that intellectual property based companies support 40 million U.S. jobs and $5 trillion in annual economic activity.”
“If inventors can’t defend our intellectual property, how can we afford to risk the time and money to develop new technology?”