In the Spotlight


WIPO-CPIP Summer School
on Intellectual Property

June 3-14, 2019

Antonin Scalia Law School
George Mason University
Arlington, Virginia

The Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property (CPIP) at Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University, has partnered with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to host the second iteration of the WIPO-CPIP Summer School on Intellectual Property.

This exclusive, two-week summer course will be held in Arlington, Virginia—just minutes from Washington, D.C., one of the world’s key centers of IP law and policymaking. The course provides a unique opportunity for students, professionals, and government officials to work with leading experts to gain a deeper knowledge of IP to advance their careers.

The course consists of lectures, case studies, simulation exercises, and group discussions on selected IP topics, with an orientation towards the interface between IP and other disciplines. A certificate of participation is awarded to participants who successfully complete the course requirements.

To visit our course website, please click here.


CPIP Scholars Join Comments to FTC on How Antitrust Overreach is Threatening Healthcare Innovation

On December 21, 2018, CPIP Senior Scholars Adam Mossoff and Kristen Osenga joined former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Randall Rader and SIU Law’s Mark Schultz in comments submitted to the FTC as part of its ongoing Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century Hearings. Through the hearings, the FTC is examining whether recent economic or technological changes warrant adjustments to competition or consumer protection laws. The comments submitted to the FTC explain how the FTC itself is harming innovation in the health sciences by meddling in patent disputes between branded and generic drug companies.

To read the comments, please click here.


CPIP’s Sean O’Connor Files Comments with FTC on Consumer and Competition Concerns with Copyright Licensing

On December 21, 2018, CPIP Director of International Innovation Policy Sean O’Connor filed comments before the FTC as part of its hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century. In October of 2018, Prof. O’Connor participated in the hearings on the Competition Policy and Copyright Law panel, and he submitted these comments to further expand upon the issues he discussed there.

To read the comments, please click here.


CPIP Scholars Join Comment Letter to FTC Supporting Evidence-Based Approach to IP Policymaking

On December 21, 2018, CPIP Senior Scholars Jonathan Barnett, Chris Holman, Erika Lietzan, Adam Mossoff, Sean O’Connor, and Kristen Osenga joined a comment letter that was filed with the FTC as part of its ongoing hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century. The comment letter was joined by 18 legal academics, economists, and former government officials—including former USPTO Director David Kappos and former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Paul Michel.

The comment letter begins:

We support evidence-based policy-making by the FTC concerning all aspects of technological innovation, intellectual property (IP) rights, and the relationship between IP rights and innovation markets. It is imperative that the FTC ground any policy statements, investigations, or enforcement actions, not on academic theories about how IP rights might potentially be misused in stylized theoretical models, but on persuasive evidence of actual consumer harm from anti-competitive practices in real-world markets. Otherwise, regulatory overreach could undermine the economic incentives and resulting stream of innovative products and services that consumers enjoy in markets in which reliable and effective IP rights attract the private capital necessary to fund the high costs of R&D and the commercialization process.

To read the comment letter, please click here.


CPIP Scholars Join Amicus Brief Arguing That Government Cannot Petition for CBM Review

On December 17, 2018, CPIP Senior Scholars Adam Mossoff and Kristen Osenga joined an amicus brief written on behalf of seven law professors by Professor Adam MacLeod, a CPIP Thomas Edison Innovation Fellow for 2017 and 2018 and a member of CPIP’s growing community of scholars. The brief, which was filed in Return Mail Inc. v. United States Postal Service, asks the Supreme Court to reverse the Federal Circuit’s determination that the federal government has standing to challenge the validity of an issued patent in a covered business method (CBM) review before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB).

The amicus brief written by Prof. MacLeod argues that the Federal Circuit was wrong to hold that the federal government could be treated as a “person” who had been charged with infringement. The brief points out that the federal government cannot be liable for patent infringement since it has sovereign immunity. Instead, the government has the authority to take a license whenever it pleases under its eminent domain power—so long as it pays just compensation to the patentee. The Federal Circuit classified the Postal Service’s appropriation as infringement, thus bringing it within Section 18(a)(1)(B) of the AIA. But, as the amicus brief notes, an infringement is an unlawful exercise of the exclusive rights granted to a patentee. The government may have exercised Return Mail’s patent rights, but it did not do so unlawfully, and as such it is not in the same position as a private party who has been charged with infringement.

To read the amicus brief, please click here.


Federalist Society’s Regulatory Transparency Project Issue Paper on Regulatory Overreach at the FTC

On December 10, 2018, the Federalist Society’s Regulatory Transparency Project published an issue paper entitled Will Overzealous Regulators Make Your Smartphone Stupid? The paper was written by CPIP Senior Scholars Adam Mossoff and Kristen Osenga, among others.

The issue paper addresses the FTC’s regulatory overreach in its investigations, policy statements, and enforcement actions on standard essential patents (SEPs) specifically and patent licensing more generally. It criticizes the FTC for basing its actions on unproven academic theories and threatening real-world innovation and the innovation economy.

To read the issue paper, please click here.