The Federal Trade Commission held the fourth session of the Hearings initiative with two full-day sessions held at the FTC’s Constitution Center facilities in Washington, D.C. on October 23-24, 2018.
The two-day event examined the role of intellectual property in promoting innovation from academic, economic, and industry perspectives. The sessions also examined emerging trends in patent quality and litigation, and included the FTC’s first wide-scale exploration of copyright issues. Drew Hirshfeld, Commissioner for Patents for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, presented a keynote address on October 24. The Hon. Scott R. Boalick, Acting Chief Judge for the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and Commissioner Hirshfeld joined the first panel after Commissioner Hirshfeld’s remarks. A detailed agenda is available below.
The Commission invited public comment on these issues, including on the following questions:
- Is there a role for the government in advancing or supporting innovation?
What is the importance of intellectual property – all forms – in advancing, protecting, and supporting innovation? Does it differ because of industry-specific or other market-based factors, or because of the form of intellectual property?
How does modern economic analysis and empirical literature view the relationship between intellectual property and innovation, and the role of government in advancing and supporting innovation? Are there differences that depend on the type of intellectual property, and the protections offered for that intellectual property?
How can the FTC use its enforcement and policy authority to advance innovation? What factors should the FTC consider in attempting to achieve this objective?
What are emerging trends in patent quality and litigation issues? Should these trends influence the FTC’s enforcement and policy agenda?
How should the current status of copyright law and current business practices influence the FTC’s enforcement and policy agenda?
The FTC Hearings On Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century will accommodate as many attendees as possible; however, admittance will be limited to seating availability. Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Request for accommodations should be submitted to Elizabeth Kraszewski via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (202) 326-3087. Such requests should include a detailed description of the accommodation needed. Please allow at least five days advance notice for accommodation requests; last minute requests will be accepted but may not be possible to accommodate.