Over the last decade, a growing consensus has emerged: there are too many patents, and they are causing a host of problems. These problems include patent ‘trolling’, patent ‘wars’, and other wasteful societal costs. In explaining this patent overabundance, some scholars have pinpointed the United States Patent Office, the governmental body responsible for issuing patents, as the main culprit. Others have blamed patent holders themselves, identifying a number of incentives these parties have to pursue patents even in cases where doing so makes little economic sense. Overall, these analyses thus typically assume a high and relatively uniform demand for patents among inventive parties – one that the United States Patent Office is only too willing to satisfy … (more)
Clark D Asay, ‘Patenting Elasticities’, Southern California Law Review, Volume 91, Number 1 (November, 2017).