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CEA Says No to Patent Trolls

SHIELD Act would discourage baseless lawsuits, says CEA CEO Gary Shapiro


SHIELD Act should limit baseless lawsuits by patent trolls. (Illustration by David Saracino / New York Observer)

The Consumer Electronics Association is sick of the high price of defending patents and wants to end baseless lawsuits, espcially from so-called patent trolls – folks who buy up patents for no other reason than to collect fees from potential infringers.

CEA announced today its Support of the Saving High-Tech Innovators from Egregious Legal Disputes (SHIELD) Act, introduced by by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).

“If we want to build American businesses and create jobs, we need to change the law that encourages baseless but disruptive legal threats for American businesses,” says CEA chief Gary Shapiro. “A successful defense of a patent lawsuit costs upwards of a million dollars, so many small businesses and startups cannot fight back or get funding to continue their businesses.”

Current law encourages “unethical patent trolls,” Shapiro says. “The SHIELD Act allows the losing litigant to be assessed legal fees, a helpful and sensible first step to strike back at patent trolls, and [disincentivize] baseless lawsuits.

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