Blockchain has the potential to be the brand new frontier of innovation and a disruptor of present applied sciences, and with this, has the potential for vital patent litigation. The know-how now generally generally known as “blockchain” was described by Stuart Haber and W. Scott Stornetta, after which used to describe the framework for bitcoin by a writer using the pen name Satoshi Nakamoto. Essentially the most talked-about use for blockchain has been for monetary devices, such because the aforementioned bitcoin in addition to Ethereum and scores of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. Nonetheless, blockchain is being thought of for quite a few different areas, together with vitality buying and selling, provide chain administration, well being care, e-commerce and life sciences.
Blockchain has been the topic of quite a few patent functions over the previous decade. As of the time of this writing, a minimum of 5,745 issued patents particularly tackle blockchain. The variety of patents revealed and issued on the know-how has been rising:
The variety of patents associated to blockchain is critical, however the variety of patents issued for a lot of different applied sciences dwarfs that quantity. The variety of issued blockchain patents is probably going due partially to the prolonged time lag between when an software is filed and when a patent is issued (currently averaging 23.2 months). Extra patents are on their manner, and the quantity issued continues to be rising.
Blockchain has not been a big supply of patent litigation. Nonetheless, one case presently within the courts is Rady v. Boston Consulting Group, LLC. There, Rady developed a way for figuring out bodily gadgets, significantly gem stones, by their distinctive properties utilizing 3D spatial mapping and spectral evaluation and recording the consequence on a blockchain that acts to ensure the authenticity of the bodily merchandise. A defendant moved to dismiss by asserting the patent are usually not patentable material as a result of it covers an summary idea with none inventiveness. The present state of patentability legislation is a possible hurdle for blockchain litigation, and may the case proceed, it might present an early indication of how declare building and any validity challenges might play out for blockchain patents.
There’s cause to consider extra patent litigation associated to blockchain is coming, however solely time will inform what number of extra instances are filed. As extra patents are issued, the possibilities that they are going to come into the palms of a celebration prepared to claim them improve as effectively. Moreover, as corporations coping with this know-how mature, they’re making extra income. This income will entice these desirous to extract worth from their patents. That is definitely an space to regulate for all these fascinated with patent litigation.
 https://www.lens.org/ utilizing the search phrases “Blockchain” and “Distributed Ledger.”
 No. 1-20-cv-02285 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 13, 2020).