CASENOTE: PERMANENT INJUNCTION, A REMEDY BY ANY OTHER NAME IS PATENTLY NOT THE SAME: HOW EBAY V. MERCEXCHANGE AFFECTS THE PATENT RIGHT OF NON-PRACTICING ENTITIES Skip over navigation
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Copyright (c) 2007 George Mason Law Review
George Mason Law Review

CASENOTE: PERMANENT INJUNCTION, A REMEDY BY ANY OTHER NAME IS PATENTLY NOT THE SAME: HOW EBAY V. MERCEXCHANGE AFFECTS THE PATENT RIGHT OF NON-PRACTICING ENTITIES

Summer, 2007

14 Geo. Mason L. Rev. 1035

Author

Miranda Jones *

Excerpt



Introduction

Intellectual property plays an undeniably important role in the United States economy. 1 Economists estimate that the United States' intellectual property today "is worth between $ 5 trillion and $ 5.5 trillion, equivalent to about 45 percent of U.S. GDP and greater than the GDP of any other nation in the world." 2 The recognition that intellectual property was an overlooked asset of tremendous value led to corporations shifting focus from land and material resources to intellectual property resources, including patents. 3 This recognition also led to the rise of business entities focused solely on acquiring under-valued patents 4 and realizing the value of those patents through licensing and enforcement of the patent right, the right to exclude. 5 These entities are often referred to as non-practicing entities ("NPEs"), 6 or more pejoratively as patent trolls. 7 Since the value of a patent rests on the enforcement of the right to exclude, a patent owner that cannot efficiently or effectively enforce the patent right holds an under-valued, or perhaps even valueless, patent. 8 NPEs purchase patents from inventors, allowing them to profit from the value of their inventions and also providing them with an important source of funding for further research and development. 9 Arguably, this transaction between inventor and NPE can be viewed as a division of cooperative labor, allowing each entity to do what it does best, whether that is inventing or enforcing patent rights. 10

The dispute, and ...
 
 
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