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US: Patent troll study still in prep phase

 |  June 15, 2014

The Federal Trade Commission is one step closer to officially launching its study of the effects of patent assertion entities on innovation and competition, but according to reports, the regulator will first need one last round of public comment.

Reports say last fall’s call for public comment on PAEs, often referred to as patent trolls, were largely in favor of the FTC’s planned inquiry. The proposed study was tweaked in response to public comment, and that revised plan will again need the public’s opinion.

Reports say the additional round of commentary is necessary for the Office of Management and Budget to allow the FTC to move forward with the study; the OMB is now seeking comment to do so.

The FTC is slated to conduct its review of PAEs as opponents slam the companies, which acquire patents for the sole purpose of obtaining licensing fees or suing patent infringers in court, for harming competition and innovation and leading to excessive litigation.

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