Thursday 16 October 2014

"Patents and Telecoms": a forthcoming symposium

"Patents in Telecoms" is a fascinating area for contentious and non-contentious IP experts and practitioners alike. As  the title of a conference, however, it doesn't give away very much information.  A symposium with that very title is however soon to be held in the lovely facilities of the George Washington University's Jack Morton Auditorium, under the joint auspices of leading academic institutions IBIL (the Institute of Brand and Innovation Law, University College London) and George Washington University -- with active support from the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) and  the Groupe Speciale Mobile Association (GSMA).

So what is this event all about? On 6 and 7 November, an embarrassingly impressive roster of participants is coming together to review key issues in this tantalisingly difficult sector. There will be a Judge’s Panel with Chief Judge Sharon Prost, Justice Bennett from Australia (who spent nearly a year trying the Australian bit of Apple v Samsung before the parties settled), Judge Deichfuss (German Supreme Court), Judge Kalden (Dutch Court of Appeal) and Lord Justice Floyd (Court of Appeal, England and Wales).  There's also a Regulators' Panel which features major personalities from the Federal Trade Commission, the US Department of Justice, and the European Commission.

In addition to the judges and regulators, there are contributions from some of the most important companies in rhe sector, with speakers from standard setting bodies, operators, manufacturers, licensors, licensees, patent assertion entities, lawyers and industry experts.

Regular readers of this weblog will need little reminding of the importance of FRAND licence schemes [a selection of our FRAND-related posts can be read here]. The symposium offers a panel session on FRAND defences to patent infringement and how to calculate FRAND royalties, moderated by Roger G. Brook (Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP) and with Professor Sir Robin Jacob, Brian Napper (FTI), Professor David Teece (UC Berkeley) and Gregory Sidak (Criterion Economics).

Regarding patents as an asset class, and the issues involved in pricing and trading in them [a topic covered by IP Finance's recent dialogue between Joff Wild and Neil Wilkof, here], Sharaz Gill (Skepsis) is moderating a further panel on buying and selling patents, featuring Will Plut (Patent Profit International), Linda Biel (Allied Security Trust), Duane Valz (Google), Aleksander Mehrle (Sisvel) and Chris Israel (American Continental Group).

There's plenty more to stimulate the interest of the patent-and-telecom connoisseur. To see the full programme and access registration details, just click here.

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