Patent News

Apr. 15, 2015

The Hill Op-Ed: In patent debate, small inventors deserve a seat at the table, by Steve Lyon

This post originally appeared in The Hill on April 15, 2015.

The perception, for good reason, among a vast majority of the American public is that Washington too often does the bidding of big business. Deploying lobbyists, writing big checks, and bringing high profile CEO’s in to the capital gets attention and gets action. We’re seeing that playbook in action today as many of the leading big businesses in the tech industry conduct their annual fly-in under the banner of one of their many associations – TechNet.

As TechNet, which represents companies like Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Apple and many others, brings in leading executives, they will be sure to push members of Congress on one of their pet issues – comprehensive patent reform. While members will get an earful on the issue from the tech behemoths today, it’s the small businesses and individual inventors they should be listening to on the issue. Unfortunately, we don’t have the same lobbying power, big name CEO’s or campaign contributions to match them.

What we do have, though, is the facts. And the fact is small businesses are leading the nation in innovating and creating new ideas, which lead to jobs and growth. According to the Small Business Administration, “Of high patenting firms (15 or more in a four‐year period), small businesses produced 16 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms.”