Outside Publication

Chapter 4: Standards and Intellectual Property Rights Policies, Patents and Standards: Practice, Policy, and Enforcement, Bloomberg Books

2018 (Updated 2020)

Antitrust partner Richard Taffet served on the editorial board and contributed to Chapter 4, “Standards and Intellectual Property Rights Policies" in Bloomberg Law Books Patents and Standards: Practice, Policy, and Enforcement.

To effectively navigate the standards process, those involved in standards development must understand the role and mission of the relevant standards setting organization. It is also important to know how best to work within the structure of the applicable intellectual property rights (IPR) policies and satisfy the related requirements. This chapter highlights how standards influence technology development. Additionally, the chapter discusses and analyzes various IPR policies, and provides examples of requirements (e.g., disclosure, licensing) to further inform patent professionals, engineers, and others involved standards development.

This chapter discusses policies followed by standards setting organizations (SSOs) in connection with the use of intellectual property in standards developed under their authority. These policies, typically, are referred to as “patent policies” or “IPR policies.” For traditional open voluntary SSOs—i.e., those with broad memberships that address a wide-array of technical issues relating to a specific field—IPR policies define contractual terms for disclosure and licensing of patents that are essential for standard implementation. Less formal organizations, such as consortia or special interest groups (SIGs)—i.e., those that may be more limited in their membership and focus—may include requirements in their membership agreements that maintain specific obligations and rights of patent holders regarding the availability of their patented technology for use in connection with implementing a standard or
specification developed by the organization.

First, this chapter discusses background information concerning the importance of patented technologies in standards to support economic development and innovation, and the role and purposes of SSO IPR policies as well as the relationship of these policies to the standards. Second, this chapter discusses specific terms of IPR policies used in certain SSOs as non-exhaustive examples to illustrate various related aspects and procedures, and provide an overview of different IPR policy
models and practices.

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