Letter from the Editor-in-Chief
Thomas A. Ward
Welcome To The Fall Edition of New Matter for 2016. The cover is a design patent for a troll fishing lure. The troll lure symbolizes how trolls can lure law firms to represent them, particularly on a contingency basis when the expected gains can be very high. An article in this issue "Enhanced Damages: The "Halo Effect" emphasizes the recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions of Halo Electronics and a companion case Stryker Corp., where the Supreme Court granted district courts more discretion to award enhanced damages for willful patent infringement, possibly luring more troll activity. In the Supreme Court 2014 Octane Fitness decision, the troll was forced to pay the legal fees of opposing counsel as a prevailing party in an "exceptional case." Prior to the Octane Fitness decision, a finding of an "exceptional case" had been a rare occurrence in patent litigation. As such, the Halo and Stryker cases seem to be somewhat in the opposite direction of the Octane Fitness decision. These decisions by the Supreme Court show that activity around troll litigation is still not settled and the troll lure may be around for some time to come.
For this edition, and going forward, the Interest Group information at the end of New Matter has been changed. The Interest Group Reports have been replaced by a program list that identifies recent or upcoming Webinars that interest groups are undertaking. The Interest Group officers are still listed with their contact information at the end of New Matter, and for those interested in getting involved with Interest Groups, PLEASE contact one of the officers.