Congratulations to the new United States Patent and Trademark Office Director

The following statement can be attributed to Engine's Executive Director, Evan Engstrom:

"Engine congratulates Andrei Iancu on his Senate confirmation to the position of U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Director, and we look forward to working with him to ensure that the country’s patent system works for everyone.

The USPTO has taken great strides toward improving patent quality in recent years, including its work through the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, a process to challenge the validity of broad, vague, and otherwise low-quality patents that have already been issued. The process—created by the America Invents Act that Congress passed in 2011—has added some much-needed balance to the country’s patent system. It has also been a crucial tool for the startups that are easily targeted by patent trolls who weaponize bad patents and threaten frivolous litigation to extract costly settlements.

Startups are responsible for much of the innovation and creation of intellectual property in the U.S., but with their minimal funding and lack of extensive legal resources, they are also some of the most obvious targets for patent trolls. The USPTO’s ongoing work to improve patent quality is necessary to protect the engine of economic and job growth that is the U.S. startup ecosystem.

We look forward to working with USPTO Director Iancu to ensure the country has a balanced and high-quality patent system that works for inventors of all sizes."