Five Considerations About the Future of Technology and IP Protections

April 12, 2017
Patterson Thuente IP

We are nearly to the half-way mark on the US tour of Dennemeyer’s Future of IP and Technology Law Forum, for which I am the keynote speaker. The forums in Palo Alto, Los Angeles and Austin were extremely valuable in terms of information sharing, the audiences full of smart and forward-thinking in-house counsel and private practice IP attorneys. We had fun talking through the potential changes to come in our world and what our roles are in shaping the future.

I thought I would share some of the questions/considerations that invoked the most compelling conversations. Here are my top five:

  1. Will we someday sue robots? If we start taxing robots, as Bill Gates has suggested, why not sue them for patent infringement? Or will their search capability make infringement impossible?
  2. Will robots someday start suing us? Can a robot be a patentee and if so, will robots have standing to sue for infringement?
  3. What will future patent and trademark examination look like? Will machines replace examiners? Will IP offices join together to engage in collaborative examination? How will we all benefit?
  4. How do we make sure that future IP attorneys are educated, not only in the law, but also in utilizing technology to meet the needs of clients?
  5. Will humanity still need IP lawyers? There was a resounding “yes” answer to this question, but some very interesting analysis of how we will continue to add value.

You still have five opportunities to join in on this discussion—Chicago on 4/25; Minneapolis on 4/27; Boston on 5/9, New York City on 5/11; and Seattle on 6/7. Register here.

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