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Federal Trade Commission requests public comment on proposed study of Patent Assertion Entities
On October 3, 2013 the Federal Trade Commission published a notice requesting public comment on its proposed information requests to Patent Assertion Entities (PAEs) in the wireless communications sector, including manufacturers and other non-practicing entities and organizations engaged in licensing. The FTC defines PAEs as firms with a business model based primarily on purchasing patents and then attempting to generate revenue by asserting the intellectual property against persons who already practice the patented technology. The FTC distinguishes PAE’s from other non-practicing entities (NPEs) that primarily seek to develop and transfer technology, such as universities, research entities, and design firms. The FTC is proposing a study under Section 6(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act that will provide a better understanding of PAE activity and its costs and benefits.