- A Multifront Battle in South Carolina
- Bonus Quote of the Day
- New Hampshire Result Surprised Clinton
- Nevada Turns Into a Battleground
- Obama All But Endorses Clinton
Members of the Federal Communications Commission are back on the Hill this week, with Chairman Tom Wheeler and commissioner Ajit Pai testifying in budget and net neutrality hearings. Hearings and events on the Internet of Things are also on tap in the week ahead.
Georgetown University holds a panel discussion on discrimination and big data.
The Brookings Institution hosts a discussion with Craig Silliman, Verizon’s general counsel and executive vice president for public policy, on updating communications law and regulations.
An Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing on the Internet of Things.
A House Appropriations subcommittee holds an FCC budget hearing.
A House Science, Space and Technology subcommittee holds a hearing on the James Webb Space Telescope.
A Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation subcommittee holds a hearing on drones.
A House Judiciary subcommittee holds a hearing on abusive patent litigation.
The House Judiciary Committee holds a hearing on the FCC’s net neutrality rules.
The FCC holds an open meeting.
A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing on spectrum policy.
Microsoft holds a panel discussion on the Internet of Things.
New America holds an event on mobile health data.
The Telecommunications Industry Association hosts an event on the Internet of Things.
CQ Roll Call’s Shawn Zeller writes in the latest Roll Call Policy Focus that went online Monday:
As lobbying coalitions go, United for Patent Reform looks fierce as it wades into what’s expected to be one of 2015’s highest-profile lobbying duels in Congress.
Formed earlier this year to advocate for legislation that would make it tougher, and riskier to sue companies for infringing on a patent, United for Patent Reform includes a diverse array of firms and trade groups. Some are technology firms that own a lot of patents, such as Google, Facebook and Cisco.
Others are companies that mostly use technology to promote or run their businesses, such as Macy’s, the American Hotel and Lodging Association and the Newspaper Association of America.
He also writes:
But the reason Rep. Robert W. Goodlatte’s bill to rein in the suits stalled in the last Congress and will be difficult to pass again this year is that the opposition to his legislation is also full of high-powered advocates. They range from pharmaceutical and biotech companies, to venture capitalists and tech startups that say patents are the key to American innovation and deserve every possible protection.
The week ahead include hearings and events on issues including FirstNet (which is tasked with building a nationwide wireless broadband network for first responders), music royalties and data encryption.
A Senate Judiciary subcommittee holds a hearing titled “How Much For a Song?: The Antitrust Decrees that Govern the Market for Music.”
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley speaks at an event titled “Data-driven government: A new approach to governing” hosted by The Brookings Institution.
The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a hearing on FirstNet.
The Advisory Committee to the Congressional Internet Caucus holds a panel event on data encryption.
The Brookings Institution hosts an event on mobile health in Africa.
The Heritage Foundation hosts an event titled “Standard Setting and Patents: Is Government Policy Harming Innovation?”
A Senate Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing on NASA’s fiscal 2016 budget proposal.
The American Cable Association holds its summit and congressional committees hold cybersecurity hearings as well as budget hearings on NASA, the Federal Communications Commission and the Commerce Department this week.
Greg Walden, R-Ore., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology discusses net neutrality at the American Enterprise Institute.
The Center for Strategic & International Studies hosts a panel event on the Internet of Things and the transportation industry.
The German Marshall Fund of the United States hosts an event titled “Internet Freedom 2.1: Lessons from Asia’s Developing Democracies.”
A House Appropriations subcommittee holds a Commerce Department budget hearing.
A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee has a cybersecurity hearing.
The American Cable Association holds its summit, which continues on Thursday.
The Association of American Universities, the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, the Innovation Alliance, the Medical Device Manufacturers Association, and the National Venture Capital Association host a patent event.
A House Appropriations subcommittee holds a NASA budget hearing.
A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing titled “Reauthorization of the Federal Communications Commission: The FCC’s FY 2016 Budget Request.”
A House Homeland Security subcommittee holds a hearing titled “Industry Perspectives on the President’s Cybersecurity Information Sharing Proposal.”
New America hosts an event on technology and disability.
The House Intelligence Committee holds a cybersecurity hearing.
A Senate Appropriations subcommittee holds a hearing on NASA’s fiscal 2016 budget request.
USTelecom hosts a cybersecurity event.
As lawmakers make another effort to pass legislation targeting abusive patent litigation, universities are continuing to let them know they have problems with proposals they think go too far.
On Tuesday, more than 140 universities signed a letter to House and Senate Judiciary Committee leaders saying they’re “deeply concerned” that “much of the patent legislation currently being discussed in Congress, including the Innovation Act, H.R. 9, goes well beyond what is needed to address the bad actions of a small number of patent holders, and would instead make it more difficult and expensive for patent holders to defend their rights in good faith.”
The Association of American Universities and the Association of Public Land-grant Universities organized the letter and, according to a press release, most of the institutions that signed it are members of either or both groups. The two associations opposed House legislation during the previous Congress, saying it was too sweeping and would discourage legitimate patent rights enforcement. The two groups were critical of fee-shifting and joinder provisions in that measure and Tuesday’s letter from the individual institutions continued raising concern about those two issues:
Two such proposals – mandatory fee-shifting, where courts award attorney’s fees to the party that prevails in a suit, and involuntary joinder – are especially troubling to the university community because they would make the legitimate defense of patent rights excessively risky and thus weaken the university technology transfer process, which is an essential part of our country’s innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem.
It’s a big week in Washington with the Federal Communications Commission’s vote on net neutrality rules. A slew of events and congressional hearings are also on tap. Get ready for a busy, busy week, folks.
New America hosts a day-long event titled “Cybersecurity for a New America: Big Ideas and New Voices.”
COMPTEL hosts a day-long policy summit.
The Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy hosts an event on rewriting the 1934 Communications Act.
The Hudson Institute hosts an event titled “American Broadband Under Title II.”
A subcommittee of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a space exploration hearing.
The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation hosts an event on cross-border data flows.
A House Appropriations subcommittee holds an oversight hearing on the Justice and Commerce Departments and NASA.
A subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee holds a hearing on the net neutrality proposal before the Federal Communications Commission.
The House Homeland Security Committee holds a hearing on the President’s cybersecurity information-sharing proposal.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee holds a hearing titled “FCC Process: Examining the Relationship Between the FCC and the White House.”
The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation hosts a panel discussion on net neutrality and network management.
The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a hearing titled “Preserving the Multistakeholder Model of Internet Governance.”
BakerHostetler hosts a day-long symposium on Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act.
The Federal Communications Commission votes on net neutrality rules and an order addressing two municipal broadband petitions.
A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing on patent demand letters, which allege someone is infringing on a patent.
The House Judiciary Committee holds a hearing on the U.S. Copyright Office.
The heads of the National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Standards and Technology testify before a House Science, Space and Technology subcommittee on their fiscal 2016 budget requests.
Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker testifies before a Senate Appropriations subcommittee on the department’s fiscal 2016 budget request.
A House Science, Space and Technology subcommittee holds a hearing on NASA’s commercial crew program.
Among this week’s events, Lincoln Labs hosts its Reboot Congress event, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a hearing on the Internet of Things and the Technology Policy Institute holds an event on patent legislation.
The Cato Institute hosts an event on ridesharing and regulations.
Project GOAL hosts an event on Internet safety and older adults.
Lincoln Labs begins its Reboot Congress event, which continues through Thursday.
Public Knowledge and the R Street Institute host a Capitol Hill briefing on copyright law.
The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee holds a hearing on the Internet of Things.
The Technology Policy Institute hosts an event titled “Patents in Theory and Practice: Implications for Reform.”
A subcommittee of the House Education and the Workforce Committee holds a hearing on emerging technology and student privacy.
A subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee holds a hearing on recent Supreme Court patent cases.
Some subcommittees of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee hold joint hearings titled “Bridging the Gap: America’s Weather Satellites and Weather Forecasting” and “Can Americans Trust the Privacy and Security of their Information on HealthCare.gov?”
New America hosts a congressional briefing on mobile broadband and net neutrality.
The State of the Net Conference, a House hearing regarding data breach legislation and the Federal Communications Commission’s January open meeting are on tap for this week.
The Federal Communications Commission hosts a “Small Business & Emerging Technologies Conference and Tech Fair.”
A subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee holds a hearing titled “What are the Elements of Sound Data Breach Legislation?”
A subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee holds a cybersecurity hearing.
The Internet Education Foundation hosts its annual State of the Net Conference.
The American Enterprise Institute’s Center for Internet, Communications and Technology Policy hosts an event on tech policy issues in 2015.
The Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy hosts a panel discussion on media mergers and independent programmers.
A subcommittee of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee holds a hearing on supercomputing.
The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee holds a hearing titled “Protecting America from Cyber Attacks: The Importance of Information Sharing.”
The Center for Democracy and Technology holds an event titled “Always On: The Digital Patient.”
The Federal Communications Commission holds its January open meeting.
George Mason University School of Law’s Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property co-hosts a discussion on patents and startups.
It was a short but busy week and your Weekly Wrapup includes posts on the State of the Union address, net neutrality hearings and patents.
Valencia Martin-Wallace has been promoted to a newly-created job at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office — deputy commissioner for patent quality.
A few notes about Martin-Wallace:
So, what’s the new job? If it’s not obvious from the title, it involves managing patent quality work.
Martin-Wallace’s bio says she’s “responsible for sustaining the high quality of the USPTO’s patent examination processes and products by implementing and maintaining a comprehensive quality management system.”
Her boss, USPTO Deputy Director Michelle K. Lee (who’s been nominated to be director and is currently the most senior USPTO official since the director post has long been vacant.) said at The Brookings Institution on Thursday that the new position would “focus exclusively on patent quality efforts at the PTO.”
“I wanted one person whose one and only job it is to think day in and day out on how to improve patent quality at the PTO,” Lee said.
As an aside, if you’ll recall, Technocrat had a post earlier this week about a couple proponents of legislation targeting abusive patent litigation saying they were disappointed that there was no mention of such legislation in President Barack Obama‘s State of the Union speech.
Answering a reporter’s question about Obama not mentioning patent legislation in his speech, Lee said it wasn’t an indication that the issue was a lesser priority for the administration.
“For patents to get two mentions two years in a row would be fantastic,” but the President has “obviously many competing demands” on his time,” she said, adding that it doesn’t reflect a change in priorities.