[Ip-health] Washington Post (The Switch): White House picks D.C. attorney Danny Marti to be the next ‘IP czar’

Thiru Balasubramaniam thiru at keionline.org
Mon Sep 1 03:45:54 PDT 2014


The Switch <http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch>

White House picks D.C. attorney Danny Marti to be the next ‘IP czar’

By Nancy Scola <http://www.washingtonpost.com/people/nancy-scola> August 28

The South Lawn and the White House is pictured in Washington August 7,
2014. (REUTERS/Larry Downing )

The White House announced Thursday that it is nominating a new Intellectual
Property Enforcement Coordinator, known colloquially as the "IP czar." He
is Washington lawyer Daniel H. Marti

The position coordinates U.S. law-enforcement strategy around copyright,
patents and trademarks.  The coordinator's duties, somewhat controversial
from the start, include harmonizing the enforcement activities of several
federal agencies under the White House's  Joint Strategic Plan on
Intellectual Property Enforcement

The "czar" spot has been vacant since last August, when Victoria Espinel
left the post. When paired with the long-standing vacancy at the head of
the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
that has led to grumbling in some quarters that the White House hasn't been
making a priority of so-called intellectual property issues.

Marti, who is known as "Danny," is the managing partner in the D.C. office
of the law firm Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton. He received a B.A. from
Georgetown University in 1996 and a J.D. from Emory University School of
Law in Atlanta in 1999.

According to his law firm biography, Marti has "represented clients in a
wide range of cases involving trademarks, false advertising, unfair
competition, copyrights, trade secrets, cybersquatting and computer fraud
and abuse matters before various U.S. federal courts, as well as the
Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) and the World Intellectual Property
Organization (WIPO)."

Those clients have tended to be in the business of selling high-end and
mid-range consumer fashion products; Marti's record
includes working on behalf of brands like Tory Burch, Adidas, and American
Eagle Outfitters to protect their trademarks and other rights.

The Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator post was created under
the 2008 Prioritizing Resources and Organization for Intellectual Property
Act (PRO-IP) Act, a bill pushed for by the entertainment industries. At the
time, the Justice Department in particular complained that the new
coordinator, housed in the White House's Office of Management and Budget
<http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/intellectualproperty>, might complicate
existing law enforcement efforts.

Reactions to the appointment have tended to focus on the position rather
than on Marti himself.

"We are pleased that the President has appointed Danny Marti as the next
U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator,"  NBCUniversal general
counsel Kim Harris said in a statement, “and urge Congress to move quickly
to confirm his nomination to this important position. We look forward to
working with Danny and the administration on the important issue of
protecting IP, which is a key driver of American innovation and economic

Said David Hirschmann, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of
Commerce's Global Intellectual Property Center, "We are pleased to see the
administration moving forward with filling this critical role and the
Chamber is anxious to build on the successes and momentum already
established by the White House Intellectual Property Enforcement
Coordinator. As Congress recognized when it created this position in 2008
with strong bipartisan support, American consumers, workers and job
creators, benefit from this critical effort to protect our creative and
innovative industries.‎"

Meanwhile, Mitch Stoltz, staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier
Foundation, wrote in an e-mail that "given Mr. Marti's background, he
certainly understands that careless over-enforcement of trademark,
copyright, and patent laws can harm our economic progress and our freedom
of speech. We hope he reaches out to many segments of society, including
independent artists and innovators, educators, small businesses, and
nonprofits, and listens to their input on what the government's priorities
should be."

"Mr. Marti," Stoltz said, "should put government resources to work stopping
truly dangerous counterfeit products and abusive patent trolls, instead of
controversial copyright policing."

Marti still needs to be confirmed by the Senate.

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