ANA Offers Insurance for “Patent Troll” Protection

August 11, 2015

By Bill Duggan

The ANA has announced a program to provide members with focused patent infringement defense insurance protection for marketing and advertising activities. 

Patent assertion entities (PAEs), sometimes referred to as patent trolls, are firms which have the sole business of asserting patent claims against targeted companies, costing those companies millions of dollars in fees in order to defend against the claim. In the advertising space, PAEs have been increasingly in the news by claiming ownership of many common advertising practices, including using QR codes to direct a mobile device user to web content, putting a store locator on a website, superimposing a facial image on an animated body image, placing static ads in a video stream, and embedding a URL in a text message to direct a mobile device to web content.

As a result, marketers and/or their agencies could be faced with demands to pay large fees to PAEs that have not provided any direct services or technology to an advertising campaign, or, in many cases, contributed to any innovation. Furthermore, patent infringement is not covered under standard advertising liability policies, and thus far, standalone policies for patent infringement haven't met the specific needs and core concerns of members.

To address this issue, the ANA Patent Infringement Defense Insurance Program provides members with focused patent infringement defense insurance protection for marketing and advertising activities.

Patent trolls are still very much in the news and a continued nuisance to many ANA members.  We feel that insurance for patent infringement defense is a great new member benefit that provides good coverage at a modest cost. 

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