Goodlatte releases second patent draft. "House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) released a second discussion draft of legislation aimed at curbing patent litigation abuse," the Hill reports. "The draft includes transparency measures that would require companies suing for patent infringement to disclose the patent's assignee, the assignee's parent company, 'any entity with a right to sublicense or enforce the patent' and entities other than the company bringing the case that have a financial interest in the company or the patent." However, "the draft does not expand the types of patents that can be reexamined by the USPTO to software patents."
How a Crypto ‘Backdoor’ Pitted the Tech World Against the NSA. "In August 2007, a young programmer in Microsoft’s Windows security group stood up to give a five-minute turbo talk at the annual Crypto conference in Santa Barbara," Wired reports. "The talk was only nine slides long. But those nine slides were potentially dynamite. They laid out a case showing that a new encryption standard, given a stamp of approval by the U.S. government, possessed a glaring weakness that made an algorithm in it susceptible to cracking." The presentation didn't make a big splash at the time. But in the wake of the Ed Snowden revelations, the talk is suddenly in the spotlight.
U.S. trade panel judge says HTC violates Nokia patents. "HTC Corporation infringed on two Nokia Corp patents in making its mobile telephones and tablets, a judge said in a preliminary ruling issued on Monday for the U.S. International Trade Commission," Reuters reports. "The full ITC is scheduled to make a final decision on the matter on January 23, 2014. Finland's Nokia filed the complaint last year."
China to lift ban on Facebook – but only within Shanghai free-trade zone. "Beijing has made the landmark decision to lift a ban on Internet access within the Shanghai Free-trade Zone to foreign websites considered politically sensitive by the Chinese government, including Facebook, Twitter and newspaper website The New York Times," the The South China Morning Post reports. The free trade zone "will span 28.78 square kilometres in the city’s Pudong New Area, including the Waigaoqiao duty-free zone, Yangshan deepwater port, and the international airport area. Government sources told the Post earlier this month that the free-trade zone could be eventually expanded over the next few years to include the entire Pudong district, which covers 1,210.4 square kilometres."
Senators call for investigation of surveillance programs. "Nine Senate Judiciary Committee members called on the intelligence community's inspector general on Monday to conduct 'comprehensive reviews' of the government's surveillance programs," the Hill reports. "The bipartisan group wrote that recently declassified documents 'appear to reveal numerous violations of law and policy.'"