Kilpatrick Townsend Partner Paul Haughey recently presented at the Kilpatrick Townsend Intellectual Property Seminars (KTIPS) Summer Series about “IP Due Diligence in the Age of Blockchain & Artificial Intelligence.” KTIPS is an intensive, two-day patent strategy and protection seminar for firm clients designed to provide insightful and in-depth training related to current developments in patent law, and how those impact patent procurement and enforcement strategies.

Key takeaways from the presentation include:

1. Due diligence of Blockchain inventions:

• Early Blockchain patents may be subject to validity challenge due to limited patent prior art • Check for divided infringement issues • Blockchain patent may not mean right to exclude others because of open source license • Patents on applying Blockchain to new uses may be subject to obviousness challenge

2. Due diligence of AI inventions:

• Most algorithms are old, check validity for recent AI algorithm patent • New use patent – search for the use in prior art, not AI • If company value is data for training, value may be in trade secret protection of data, not patents or ©

3. AI for IP diligence – main current uses:

• Prior art searching • Categorization • Identify competitors • Trends

4. AI for diligence trends:

• More than 280 legal technology start-ups have raised $757 million since 2012 • Expect a variety of very specialized uses requiring years of manual input and training to produce AI software • Early contract review uses – search for change-of control, assignability, and term

5. AI is a tool for diligence, not a solution:

• There is no substitute for a technically trained patent attorney having a conversation with founders and asking about the source of the product