Letter: Federal patent bill is bad news for small businesses

Dear Editor:

The U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate continue to ignore the needs of the small business community despite the desperate need for the jobs smaller American businesses create. For years the small business community has repeatedly warned the Congress that provisions in various Federal patent bills, like current House Bill H.R. 1249, the “America Invents Act,” will hurt small American businesses that depend on patent protection and will prevent job creation. Yet spurred on by intense lobbying by large non-American multinational corporations that are also outsourcing jobs, H.R. 1249 is now close to passage. H.R. 1249 is a give-away of our American job creating ability, patent laws and proud tradition of invention from the McCormick reaper to Edison’s lightbulb to Google’s search engine. Smaller American businesses have not even been allowed to testify about any Congressional patent bill in the last five years.

H.R. 1249 is opposed by a coalition of small business and individual inventor advocates that includes the National Small Business Association, the IEEE-USA (the country’s largest society of engineers), the U.S. Business and Industry Council and others; see letter at https://ieeeusa.org/policy/policy/2011/032911.pdf . These smaller American business advocates all say that Congress should drop H.R. 1249 and its provisions written by large multinationals and pursue instead a bill that benefits the entire country. This is especially important since smaller American businesses have to create new jobs to replace the jobs outsource by the multinationals.

Americans can support the interests of the entire country by opposing H.R. 1249. You need not be an expert on the bill. You need only contact your Congressman/Congresswoman and ask him/her to oppose H.R. 1249 and pursue instead a bill that does not hurt smaller American businesses and the creation of new jobs we desperately need.

Priya Cloutier
Patent Attorney

  1. The patent system (especially the software patent system) today is a complete mess. If things had been this bad when Microsoft was started, they would have been crushed out of existence by IBM.

    I agree with Priya that this makes things much worse. If you want to see new small businesses in Edmonds putting people to work and bringing new tax revenue to our city, I urge you to contact Re. Inslee as Pritya suggests and ask him to vote no.

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