The Big Story: CASE Act exacerbates existing copyright problems. The bill that could make copyright law more confusing and easy to misuse is making its way through the House. The House Judiciary Committee held a markup on Tuesday of the “Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019,” or the “CASE Act.” As Engine IP Counsel Abby Rives explained in a recent InsideSources op-ed, the CASE Act—which passed committee on a voice vote—would “exacerbate existing problems in copyright enforcement and cause new ones.”
The Speak Easy, a non-profit coworking space in Indianapolis, serves as a successful hub of entrepreneurial activity in the Midwest. Hosting startups and businesses from a variety of industries, The Speak Easy provides a setting for entrepreneurs to collaborate and innovate with one another. Julie Heath, The Speak Easy’s executive director, recently took the time to chat with us about the co-working environment, issues impacting local startups, and the space’s participation in Congressional Startup Day.
Chicago boasts the highest percentage of female founders in the United States, with approximately 34 percent of the city’s startups run by women. One of these successful entrepreneurs is Reva Minkoff, an experienced digital marketing professional. As the founder and president of two digital marketing startups—Digital4Startups and DigitalGroundUp—Reva has been recognized for her leading role in Chicago’s startup ecosystem. We caught up with Reva to discuss her companies, the Chicago ecosystem, and some of the policy issues that are critically important to startups.
The Big Story: Tech news from the G-7 summit. French President Emmanuel Macron announced during the G-7 summit that France and the United States reached “a very good agreement” to end a standoff on France’s new digital services tax on online platforms. In a press conference with President Trump, Macron said tech companies that pay the tax could deduct the amount after an international deal on taxing Internet companies is finalized next year.
The Los Angeles metropolitan area is home to more than 13 million people. It’s also home to Lemonlight, an Inglewood-based video production company that focuses on creating well-designed, affordable videos for companies across the U.S. and, soon, across the world. We recently spoke with Hope Horner, Lemonlight’s co-founder and CEO, about the startup’s work, her experiences in California, and her goals for the company moving forward.
A recent Federal Circuit decision addressing the constitutionality of inter partes review (IPR)—a Patent Office review of a patent that has already been issued—is a positive development for promoting patent quality and leveling the playing field for startups involved in patent litigation. In Celgene Corp. v. Peter, the court held that IPR proceedings which result in the cancellation of issued patent claims are not an unconstitutional taking of private property. While it seems likely the Supreme Court will eventually weigh in on the question, for now IPRs remain available to startups who want to ask the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to take a second look at weak patents that arguably should have never issued.
The Big Story: 2019 Congressional Startup Day. This Wednesday, August 21st was Congressional Startup Day, a nationwide celebration of entrepreneurial communities across the United States. Lawmakers used the day to highlight the importance of the U.S. startup ecosystem, as well as learn more about the issues affecting startups in their districts and across their states. More than 50 members of Congress and their staffers agreed to meet with startups and entrepreneurs during the August recess as part of Congressional Startup Day festivities.
Most of us think of wearables as the smartwatch on our wrist or the monitor embedded in grandma’s bracelet, but GoRout has imagined a new method for integrating software and wearable tech. We spoke with GoRout CEO Mike Rolih to learn more about his company, the Minnesota startup ecosystem, and how GoRout is improving efficiency in the game of football and beyond.
What’s happening this week: Representatives from tech companies and industry trade groups slammed France’s new digital services tax yesterday during a hearing held by the Office of the United States Trade Representative, saying that the legislation unfairly targets U.S. tech companies. The hearing came after the French Senate last month approved a 3 percent tariff on tech companies with more than 25 million euros (approximately $27.7 million) in French revenue, or have a global revenue of more than 750 million euros (approximately $832 million) per year.
Charlotte, North Carolina has grown into a premier startup hub in recent years, helped in part by a ballooning number of startup-focused organizations and co-working spaces in the Queen City. To learn more about Charlotte’s burgeoning startup ecosystem, we spoke with Christine Nicodemus, COO and co-founder of SkoolAide, a startup that works to advance student learning and behavioral growth through goal-setting software.
This week, WayUp had the honor of hosting Congressman Jerry Nadler (NY-10th district) at our HQ in New York City. Not only is the congressman the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, but he also represents a large district in NYC where about a third of my employees live, and where hundreds of thousands of WayUp users reside. So, needless to say, it was an incredible opportunity.
What’s happening this week: The tech world is still digesting reports of a draft executive order from the White House that would empower the FTC and the FCC to crack down on social media platforms that moderate content that appears on their sites. The draft order, according to a summary obtained by CNN, would ask the FCC to develop regulations clarifying how and when digital platforms are protected when they remove online content. It also reportedly calls for the FTC to take the new regulations into account when it investigates or sues companies. The proposed order is not final and is subject to change, although it would represent a significant escalation of Trump administration’s allegations that social media sites are biased against conservatives.
The Big Story: Examining online extremism. The White House is holding a meeting on online extremism with tech and Internet platforms today in the wake of reports that the suspected perpetrator of last weekend’s deadly shooting in El Paso, Texas posted an anti-immigrant manifesto to online message board 8chan shortly before the shooting.
Delaware may be small, but the passion of the state’s entrepreneurs is hard to miss. One such innovative leader is Pedro Moore, who founded Funding Fuel as a means of helping everyday people build up wealth. Using an investment portfolio model, Pedro is focused on providing people, particularly those from underserved communities, with the means to invest in popular franchises to improve their financial situations.