Home / Knowledge / News / Apparel/Garments / Retailers urge action to fight patent troll demand letters
Retailers urge action to fight patent troll demand letters
08
Nov '13
Retailers, advertisers and marketers called on Congress to involve the Federal Trade Commission in efforts to eliminate frivolous patent lawsuits, saying vague letters sent out by “patent trolls” demanding licensing fees amount to unfair and deceptive practices.

“Patent trolls should not have free rein to assert expired patents, make repeated and false threats of litigation to extort fees, and materially mislead the recipients of these demands,” BrandsMart USA Executive Vice President Larry Sinewitz said. “At the very least, patent trolls should be required to provide more details in their letters.”

Sinewitz, whose electronics and appliances retailer operates 11 stores in Florida and Georgia and maintains an e-commerce operation, testified on behalf of the National Retail Federation and the Stop Patent Abuse Now (SPAN) Coalition during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on patent abuse.

The hearing focused on “demand letters” sent by patent trolls, which critics say attempt to extort large amounts of money while providing little information about the patent involved or the alleged infringement.

Sinewitz said his company has received six demand letters in the past several years, citing a two-paragraph document received in 2008 as an example of “a vague letter accusing me of patent infringement and trying to get me to pay them some unknown sum of money.”

Just initially consulting a patent attorney to determine what claims are being made can cost a company tens of thousands of dollars. Over the past 10 years BrandsMart has spent $500,000 on legal fees and settlements with patent trolls, he said.

Sinewitz called on lawmakers to include a provision in pending patent reform legislation that would require the FTC to investigate demand letters and use its existing authority to regulate unfair and deceptive trade practices to “rein in bad actors that target Main Street businesses.”

“Requiring greater and truthful disclosure will provide greater certainty to businesses, saving them time and money as they investigate the person or entity asserting the patent and determine the overall merits of the infringement claim,” he said.

Sinewitz said claims seen from patent trolls involve not just e-commerce applications but everyday business operations and practices of brick-and-mortar stores, such as scanning barcodes, printing receipts, the sale of gift cards and the connection of equipment such as computers and printers to an Ethernet network.

As the world’s largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, NRF represents retailers of all types and sizes, including chain restaurants and industry partners, from the United States and more than 45 countries abroad. Retailers operate more than 3.6 million U.S. establishments that support one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. 

NRF


Must ReadView All

US commerce department finds dumping of low melt PSF

Textiles | On 20th Jun 2018

US commerce department finds dumping of low melt PSF

The US department of commerce (USDC) has announced affirmative final...

Courtesy: Aditya Birla

Textiles | On 20th Jun 2018

'Growth of VSF yarn industry is difficult'

Growth for the viscose filament yarn (VSF) yarn industry is...

Comfort USP of Sensitive Fabrics range of Eurojersey Spa

Apparel/Garments | On 20th Jun 2018

Comfort USP of Sensitive Fabrics range of Eurojersey Spa

Italian company Eurojersey Spa will present in 2019 new embossing...

Interviews View All

Mukesh Agarwal & Rajesh Agarwal
Madhuram Fincap Pvt Ltd

Increasing prices and lack of demand main issues facing industry

Nitin Bhatia
Trend Arrest

Setting up a brand for online selling is easy, but running the brand is not

Abhimanyu Singh Rathore & Barbara Anna Kosiorek
Kannbar

‘Blending cultures is the true beauty of fashion, where one’s imagination...

Mala Alwani

<div>Delhi-based fast fashion womenswear brand, Besiva, aims to bridge the ...

Abhishek Pachauri

Reckon Industries adapts latest systems for manufacturing from designing...

Erik Sy

Manila-based CustomThread is a start-up offering premium custom apparel...

Steve Cole
Xerium Technologies

Steve Cole of Xerium Technologies discusses the industry. Xerium is the...

Urs Stalder
Sanitized AG

Urs Stalder, CEO, Sanitized AG, talks about the increasing use of hygiene...

Kerem Durdag
Biovation II LLC

Kerem Durdag, CEO, Biovation II LLC, provides an insight into future...

Yash P. Kotak
Bombay Hemp Company

One of the directors of Bombay Hemp Company, Yash P. Kotak, speaks to...

Pranav Mishra
Huemn

Designers Pranav Mishra and Shyma Shetty’s Huemn is known for its...

Aditi Somani
Aditi Somani

Aditi Somani specialises in luxury fusion wear with international cuts and ...

Press Release

Press Release

Letter to Editor

Letter to Editor

RSS Feed

RSS Feed

Submit your press release on


editorial@fibre2fashion.com

Letter To Editor






(Max. 8000 char.)

Search Companies





SEARCH

Leave your Comments


June 2018

Subscribe today and get the latest update on Textiles, Fashion, Apparel and so on.

news category


Related Categories:

Advanced Search