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President Obama’s Strong Words on Patent Trolls Must Be Followed by Action

It’s hard to say it any better than President Obama did when he spoke of patent trolls in a Google Hangout yesterday:

“They don’t actually produce anything themselves. They’re trying to essentially leverage and hijack someone else’s idea and see if they can extort some money out of them.”

In America’s high-tech sector, we all value intellectual property and believe that inventors should be protected and permitted to profit from their innovations. At the same time, we must have a rational patent system that promotes growth rather than inhibiting progress.

Patent trolls represent a clear threat to the Internet infrastructure industry. When often-faceless entities possess software patents and leverage them to make baseless claims against legitimate businesses, they stifle growth. Rather than doing the hard work of building and innovating, these patent trolls profit from what amounts to intellectual property extortion.

We welcome President Obama’s words and look forward to action from his Administration and the Congress that will help solve the epidemic of legal threats and litigation that threaten the companies that actually deliver innovation to customers.

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