Patent trolls, and patent plaintiffs generally, were active on Wednesday. April 23. 184 cases were filed on Wednesday, by numerous plaintiffs, including Signal IP, various Joao Bock entities, Interface IP, PanTaurus, Olivistar, TQP Development, eDekka, and c4cast. Of course, it could just be a bizarre coincidence, but as Dennis Crouch points out at Patently-O, it appears to be a direct reaction to the status of patent reform in the Senate. Over the weekend, an amendment was informally proposed that would make the fee shifting provisions retroactive to cases filed on or after April 24, 2014, no matter when it is signed into law:
(c) RETROACTIVITY – the amendments made by this subsection shall take effect on April 24, 2014, and shall also apply to any action for which a complaint is filed on or after that effective date.
The flood of filings the day before the proposed retroactivity would kick in cannot be a coincidence. And it is a clear indication for retailers of how patent trolls feel about fee shifting.