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Pence v Clinton: Both used private email for work, one hacked,...

One used AOL. Yes, all of these apply to Vice President Mike US Vice President Mike Pence has been accused of hypocrisy after it was revealed he used his personal AOL account for state government business.…

Pence used private mail for state work as governor, and account...

Vice President Mike Pence reportedly used a private email account to transact state business when he was governor of Indiana, and his AOL account was hacked once, according to a news report.Emails released to the Indianapolis Star following a public records request are said to show that Pence used his personal AOL account to communicate with his top advisers on issues ranging from security gates at the governor’s residence to the state’s response to terror attacks across the globe.[ Safeguard your data! The tools you need to encrypt your communications and web data. • Maximum-security essential tools for everyday encryption. • InfoWorld's encryption Deep Dive how-to report. | Discover how to secure your systems with InfoWorld's Security Report newsletter. ]A hacker seems to have got access to his email account in June last year and sent a fake mail to people on the former governor’s contact list, claiming  that Pence and his wife had been attacked on their way back to their hotel in the Philippines, according to the report. Pence subsequently changed his AOL account.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Mike Pence used an AOL e-mail account for state business and...

As a candidate, Trump VP castigated Clinton for use of a private e-mail server.

Trump orders “1 in, 2 out” rule for federal regulations

Broad order could cause problems for EPA and other agencies.

Trump Tweets Doubts On Intel Report Of Russian Involvement

President-elect backs his belief on WikiLeaks founder's statement, will meet heads of intel agencies tomorrow to discuss report. In a series of recent tweets, US President-elect Donald Trump expressed doubts over US intelligence agencies’ allegation that Russia was involved in last year’s cyberattacks on political entities and individuals in order to sway election results, Reuters reports.

Trump backed his belief on proclamation from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange that leaked documents were not provided by Russia and that US media coverage had been “very dishonest.” Trump’s tweets invited comments from White House spokesperson Josh Earnest who said "There's a pretty stark line that's been drawn, and the President-elect will have to determine who he's going to believe." Vice President-elect Mike Pence came to his leader’s defense saying: "Given some of the intelligence failures of recent years, the President-elect has made it clear to the American people that he's skeptical about conclusions from the bureaucracy." While the Obama administration has launched a probe into the hacks, several Democrats and Republicans have called for independent investigation of the matter. Meanwhile, Trump’s spokesperson has said the President-elect will be meeting heads of the CIA, FBI and DNI tomorrow to discuss their findings, adds Reuters. Click here for more details. Dark Reading's Quick Hits delivers a brief synopsis and summary of the significance of breaking news events.

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Report: “Crooked Hillary” emoji refusal kept Twitter out of Trump’s tech...

Enlarge / President-Elect Donald Trump and his team met with high-profile Silicon Valley execs in New York City today. Pictured are Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Alphabet CEO Larry Page, and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg alongside Trump and Vice-President-Elect Mike Pence.Getty Images | Drew Angerer reader comments 65 Share this story President-elect Donald Trump held a much-publicized meeting with prominent Silicon Valley tech leaders today, including Apple CEO Tim Cook, Alphabet CEO Larry Page, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, and others. Notably absent from that list is Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey or any other personnel from the social media company, despite the fact that Trump has used his Twitter account as one of his primary communication channels with the public throughout his campaign and in the weeks since the election. The explanation, according to a source speaking to Politico, may be vindictive—the source alleges that the Trump team didn't invite Twitter because the social networking service refused to implement a custom "#CrookedHillary" emoji created by the campaign.

Trump used this epithet to refer to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton throughout the campaign, an approach he also took with Republican primary challengers like Senators Ted Cruz ("Lyin' Ted") and Marco Rubio ("Little Marco"). Enlarge / The original "#CrookedHillary" emoji, according to Trump's digital advertising director. Gary Coby For its part, the Trump camp claims that Twitter was excluded from the meeting because of its size—the company's market cap is about $13.85 billion, and the smallest company represented was Tesla (market cap $31.92 billion). While the Unicode Consortium is primarily responsible for creating the emoji that most people use day-to-day, platforms like Twitter are free to create their own.

Twitter's specific custom emoji are called "hashflags," and they're used to automatically display custom emoji after specific hashtags on Twitter's site and in first-party apps. To date, the majority of these "hashflags" have been broadly apolitical and used mostly for brands (#FindingDory, #ShareACoke) or major events (#Wimbledon, #PopeInUS).

At their most political, they've been used to represent broad movements (#Pride2015, #LoveIsLove) or particular elections (#USElections2016), but they've never been used to refer to specific candidates.

Twitter has created many of these emoji of its own volition, though major companies have also paid to have them created for use in ad campaigns. A November 18 Medium post from the Trump campaign's digital advertising director Gary Coby at least confirms that conversations took place between Twitter and the Trump campaign about a #CrookedHillary emoji, among others.

Cole alleges that he had multiple conversations with Twitter's legal and sales teams, but that Dorsey himself was ultimately responsible for canceling the Trump team's proposed emoji deal. We've contacted Twitter for comment and will update if we receive a response.

Trump says CIA report that Russia helped his electoral win is...

Enlarge / US President-elect Donald Trump speaks during the USA Thank You Tour December 9, 2016 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.Don Emmert / Getty Images News reader comments 145 Share this story President-elect Donald Trump has continued to flaunt reported assessments by the CIA that the Russian government specifically helped his campaign win the presidential election, calling them "ridiculous." One of Trump’s top advisors, Kellyanne Conway, also dubbed them "laughable and ridiculous" on CBS’s "Face the Nation" on Sunday. On Friday evening, The Washington Post reported that the CIA has "concluded in a secret assessment that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency, rather than just to undermine confidence in the US electoral system, according to officials briefed on the matter." Shortly after the Post published, the Presidential Transition Team sent out a statement to Ars and other media on Friday at 9:35pm ET, essentially mocking the intelligence community: These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It’s now time to move on and "Make America Great Again." On Saturday, The New York Times quoted Gen. Michael Hayden, the former director of the National Security Agency and the CIA under President George W. Bush, as expressing shock that Trump would so wantonly dismiss the opinion of the intelligence community. "To have the president-elect of the United States simply reject the fact-based narrative that the intelligence community puts together because it conflicts with his a priori assumptions—wow," he said. In October 2016, just a month before the election, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Homeland Security publicly said that Russian-led "thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process." Check the record book On Fox News Sunday, Trump made his "ridiculous" remark, calling the report "just another excuse." "I don’t believe it," he said. "I don’t know why—and, I think it’s—they talked about all sorts of things. Every week it’s another excuse. We had a massive landslide victory, as you know, in the electoral college. I guess the final numbers are down to 306 and she was at a very low number." Trump did not win the electoral college by a "landslide." Electoral records show that his margin of victory in the electoral college was 46th out of 56 elections. "If you look at the story and you take a look at what they said, 'there’s great confusion, nobody really knows,'" Trump continued. "And hacking is very interesting. Once they hack, if you don’t catch them in the act, you’re not going to catch them. They have no idea if it’s Russia or China, or somebody. It could be somebody sitting in a bed someplace. They have no idea." During the same interview, Trump also reportedly said that as president he would not receive the top-secret President’s Daily Briefing. Currently, the president-elect is reportedly only receiving it once a week. Trump continued in his interview with Fox News Sunday that Vice President-elect Mike Pence, would receive the PDB in his place, largely because Trump finds it too repetitive. "You know, I’m, like, a smart person," he said. "I don’t have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years." "Now, there will be times where it might change," he said in the interview with Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace. "I mean, there will be some very fluid situations. I'll be there not every day, but more than that. But I don't need to be told, Chris, the same thing every day, every morning — same words. 'Sir, nothing has changed. Let's go over it again.' I don't need that." Sound the alarm Also on Sunday, a bipartisan group of four senators, including Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona), the chair of the Senate’s Armed Services Committee, released a joint statement saying that "reports of Russian interference in our election should alarm every American." The statement continued: Congress’s national security committees have worked diligently to address the complex challenge of cybersecurity, but recent events show that more must be done. While protecting classified material, we have an obligation to inform the public about recent cyberattacks that have cut to the heart of our free society. Democrats and Republicans must work together, and across the jurisdictional lines of the Congress, to examine these recent incidents thoroughly and devise comprehensive solutions to deter and defend against further cyberattacks. This cannot become a partisan issue. The stakes are too high for our country. We are committed to working in this bipartisan manner, and we will seek to unify our colleagues around the goal of investigating and stopping the grave threats that cyberattacks conducted by foreign governments pose to our national security. The press contact listed, Dustin Walker, did not immediately respond to Ars’ request for comment.

What the Trump win means for tech, science and beyond

Darron Bergenheierreader comments 135 Share this story Campaign 2016 FBI clears Clinton over new e-mails Melania Trump picks her cause if she’s First Lady: Cyberbullying Clinton v.

Trump on copyrights and patents: Reading the platform and the tea leaves Clinton, Trump do agree on one thing—the right to use marijuana Why a theoretical physicist wants all state bills to be online before final vote View more storiesRepublican presidential nominee Donald Trump defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Trump will now become the 45th president, succeeding President Barack Obama. "I say it is time for us to come together as one people," Trump, the president-elect, told supporters in New York, shortly after Clinton called him to concede the election. Here is where Trump stands on the issues near and dear to Ars: Broadband, net neutrality Trump’s presidency could bring big changes to regulation of Internet service providers—but most of them are difficult to predict because Trump rarely discussed telecom policy during his campaign.

The Federal Communications Commission’s net neutrality rules could be overturned or weakened, however, if Trump still feels the same way he did in 2014.

At the time, he tweeted, “Obama’s attack on the internet is another top down power grab. Net neutrality is the Fairness Doctrine. Will target conservative media.” Trump has promised "a temporary moratorium on new agency regulations," and he would like the FCC to fine journalists who are critical of him. Trump seems likely to take a deregulatory approach to telecom, benefiting Internet service providers who protested various new rules implemented under Democratic FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.

Aside from net neutrality, Trump hasn't discussed any specific telecom regulations that he’d like to change. Trump also hasn’t laid out any plans for expanding broadband access, so Americans hoping for improvements will likely have to rely on state and local governments or the private sector. Encryption, cybersecurity With Trump's win, it's still not clear what a Trump administration would do on the issues of cybersecurity and encryption.

As Ars reported last month, Trump and his campaign team have been vague on many such details.

During the presidential debates, he brushed off the intelligence community's consensus that the attacks against the Democratic National Committee were perpetrated or silently condoned by the Russian government.

But Trump did call for a boycott of Apple—a boycott of which he didn't even abide by—during Cupertino's fight with federal prosecutors about whether Apple should be forced to help the authorities unlock a killer's encrypted iPhone. Like most of his other policies, Trump's cybersecurity plan remains thin.
It calls for an "immediate review of all US cyber defenses and vulnerabilities, including critical infrastructure, by a Cyber Review Team of individuals from the military, law enforcement, and the private sector." Science Enlarge Aurich Lawson Trump's presidency, by some accounts, is likely to be a disaster for science. Most analyses of his proposed budgets indicate they will cause deficits to explode, and a relatively compliant Congress could mean at least some of these cuts will get enacted.

That will force the government to figure out how to cut, or at least limit, spending. Will science funding be preserved during that process? Trump's given no indication that it would.
Instead, many of his answers about specific areas of science focus on the hard choices that need to be made in light of budget constraints. With the exception of NASA, Trump hasn't identified any areas of science that he feels are worth supporting. More generally, Trump has indicated little respect for the findings of science. He has openly repeated the long and frequently debunked suggestion that vaccines can induce autism.

And he's said that the climate consensus generated by the international scientific community is little more than plot by the Chinese to hamper other economies.

And his science policy plans, where they exist, completely reflect this disdain.

For energy, he plans to do the exact opposite of what would be required to address climate change, and he plans to seek a wholesale culling of federal regulation regardless of whether there's a scientific basis for the rules. In short, a Trump administration would mean a crippled US research effort and politics that are based on short-term economic interests rather than science. Space exploration A Trump presidency also carries many unknowns when it comes to space policy specifically. However, in his official campaign statements and in a pair of op-eds written by surrogates, Trump has struck a pro-commercialism viewpoint toward civil spaceflight. "Public-private partnerships should be the foundation of our space efforts," Bob Walker and Peter Navarro, senior policy advisers to the Republican nominee, wrote in a Space News op-ed in October. "Such partnerships offer not only the benefit of reduced costs, but the benefit of partners capable of thinking outside of bureaucratic structures and regulations." Privately, space policy sources close to the Trump campaign have told Ars there is little organized activity surrounding spaceflight matters.

But they agree that it seems likely that the Trump administration will take a hard look at costly NASA programs such as the Space Launch System and Orion spacecraft, which could be replaced by cheaper, private alternatives. Intellectual property Enlarge Aurich Lawson Trump has no published policies on copyrights or patents and has said little about them.

That said, a few things make tech advocates nervous.

Trump has close ties to the entertainment world, and he is surrounded by people who have a more maximalist view of copyright. He's also taken positions that suggest his overall view on Internet freedoms wouldn't mesh with copyright reformers.

Trump has even talked about "closing" the Internet as a way to fight ISIS, and he said he would "open up" libel laws. Trump has additionally been silent on patents. His vice-presidential pick, Mike Pence, was close to a group of House Republicans who mostly opposed patent reform. Marijuana The Republican candidate said in 1990 that he favored legalization of all drugs.
Speaking of the war on drugs at the time, he said, "You have to legalize drugs to win that war." Over time, Trump's thinking has apparently changed and has waffled.
In October 2015, he was quoted in the Washington Post as saying: "In terms of marijuana and legalization, I think that should be a state issue, state-by-state." But he told the O'Reilly Factor last February that "dealers" were going to "load up" on marijuana and sell it around the country if marijuana was legalized in Colorado. He told O'Reilly that he favored medical marijuana but not the recreational use of it. It remains to be seen if Trump would turn a blind eye to the states' experiments with medical and recreational marijuana, as did President Obama.

A non-marijuana-friendly president could demand that federal agents raid marijuana farms and dispensaries.

That's because marijuana remains illegal under federal law. Ars staffers Eric Berger, Jon Brodkin, Cyrus Farivar, Joe Mullin, and John Timmer contributed to this report.

Clinton v. Trump on copyrights and patents: Reading the platform and...

EnlargeAurich Lawson | Justin Sullivan,Spencer Platt/Getty Images reader comments 21 Share this story Campaign 2016 Clinton, Trump do agree on one thing—the right to use marijuana Why a theoretical physicist wants all state bills to be online before final vote State of the biggest, best union: Trump nightly webcast debuts tonight The next President will take power with significant space decisions looming Hillary Clinton vs Donald Trump on science, energy, and the climate View more storiesThe hot-button issues this election can be counted on one's fingers—and for most voters, things like copyright and patent policy don't make the list.

Assigned to a wonkish zone far from the Sunday morning talk shows, intellectual property issues aren't near the heart of our deeply polarized political discourse. Of the two major party candidates in 2016, only the Democratic candidate has a platform that even addresses copyright and patent policies.
So today, let's look at what we know about Hillary Clinton's plan, and make some informed speculation about what could happen to these areas under a Donald Trump presidency. Given that the campaign is focused (as always) on a relatively small group of issues, tech policy watchers who spoke to Ars were surprised to see a presidential platform that mentions IP issues at all.

Clinton's briefing paper on technology and innovation addresses both copyright and patent issues directly, and that in itself is something of a surprise.

Trump's website has no such information, so the best clues to his approach lie in his public statements and the people he has surrounded himself with. Clinton on copyright: The no-SOPA promise Hillary Clinton's intentions with copyright represent something of a snapshot of where the debate stands in 2016.

Copyright policy (and one could say this for patents as well) seems like an area where the nation should be able to overcome its wide partisan gap. Yet, no legislative change of any real significance took place during the Obama Administration. Roughly speaking, two huge sectors of the economy—technology and Hollywood—were sharply at odds about what should be done. That standoff made it easy for an already do-nothing Congress to, well, do nothing. Despite the lack of legislation, there was a big change during the Obama Administration in how US lawmakers viewed copyright. Members of Congress from both parties were deluged with calls and e-mails in 2012 as the citizenry absorbed what the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) would mean for the functioning of the Internet.

The draconian proposal included methods for quickly blocking websites deemed piratical, demands that ISPs use "graduated response" to disconnect users accused as pirates, and instructions for search engines to be forcibly rearranged with a list of websites more to the liking of the RIAA and MPAA. At that time, the proposed anti-piracy law seemed destined for passage, with advocates of a more balanced copyright system hoping, at best, to whittle away at some of its worst changes.

But SOPA caused a public outcry unlike anything seen before; an Internet blackout prompted millions of calls and e-mails to Congress. Institutional memory of the anti-SOPA uprising is still strong in Congress, where politicians now approach copyright issues tentatively and reluctantly, speaking about not wanting to get "SOPA'd" on a complex topic. Speaking generally, most of the tech sector, and especially Internet companies, want a more balanced copyright system.

And they certainly don't want any kind of SOPA, or SOPA-lite proposal, whether it comes in the Congressional front door, through courts, or by lobbying state law enforcement. In that climate, Clinton's most important copyright position is her promise of what she won't be doing—and the Democratic candidate explicitly promises she won't be supporting a new version of SOPA.

As her position paper states, Clinton "maintains her opposition to policies that unnecessarily restrict the free flow of data online—such as the high profile fight over the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)." (For reasons that aren't clear, this important sentence is oddly placed in the "net neutrality" section.) Later, Clinton has a paragraph dedicated to her positions on copyright.
It isn't too long, so it's worth considering in whole, jargon and all: Effective Copyright Policy: Copyrights encourage creativity and incentivize innovators to invest knowledge, time, and money into the generation of myriad forms of content. However, the copyright system has languished for many decades, and is in need of administrative reform to maximize its benefits in the digital age. Hillary believes the federal government should modernize the copyright system by unlocking—and facilitating access to—orphan works that languished unutilized, benefiting neither their creators nor the public.
She will also promote open-licensing arrangements for copyrighted material and data supported by federal grant funding, including in education, science, and other fields.
She will seek to develop technological infrastructure to support digitization, search, and repositories of such content, to facilitate its discoverability and use.

And she will encourage stakeholders to work together on creative solutions that remove barriers to the seamless and efficient licensing of content in the U.S. and abroad. Reading between the lines, what should the interested parties make of this? "There's flowery language, and it's hard to tell what it really means, but its heart is in the right place," said Joshua Lamel, who represents tech companies in Washington as VP of BGR Group, and serves as executive director of Re:Create, a group that pushes for more balanced copyright. "I don't know anyone in the Internet world who didn't like that paper." The most important Internet copyright law is the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which was created and passed under Bill Clinton's tenure as president. "If you see the Internet as a success story, part of that is how [Bill] Clinton approached it in the 90s," Lamel told Ars.

There are problems with the DMCA and things that could be made better, but on the whole, the DMCA has done more good than harm. Of course, Hillary Clinton isn't her husband.

But her own record at the State Department, in Lamel's view, looks pretty good. Internet freedom was a major issue while Clinton ran State given the Arab Spring and related turmoil broke out on her watch.

The department voiced concern over Internet access and free speech during those events. The Clinton policy paper even cites a few points that are on the "wish list" of tech activists, like dealing with the mess around "orphan works," older copyrighted works where the owners can't be found, and ensuring open access to more federally funded content. While Clinton surprised some by citing a problem like orphan works, her platform is vague or silent on issues that are arguably more pressing. One burning issue for copyright reformers that she has no public position on is the deformed DMCA "exemption" process, in which people who want to bypass digital locks for non-piratical purposes have to ask permission from the Librarian of Congress every three years.

That's hamstrung companies, tinkerers, and activists who want to use copyrighted content for purposes that seem obviously good for society—whether it's ripping a DVD for educational slides or a documentary, or letting drivers tinker with their car software. In the view of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, that exemption process, detailed in Section 1201 of the DMCA, is "fundamentally flawed." Seeing no progress on a legislative solution, EFF filed a lawsuit in July challenging Section 1201 as unconstitutional.
Is reform of this critical area something that could get Clinton's support? The platform leaves us few clues. Finally, while Clinton was clear about speaking up for Internet access rights in other countries, she's been more heavy-handed when US national security is at issue.
Internet privacy isn't the focus of this article, but Clinton's public statements suggest that she will be at least as supportive of massive Internet surveillance as Obama was, if not more. When asked about Edward Snowden in the debates, she followed Obama's line—that he should come back to the US and face a trial, full stop.
It was her primary opponents, Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley, who showed more sympathy towards Snowden. Other matters on the wish-list of copyright reformers, such as reforming the massive statutory damages available to copyright owners, are likely to face further stalemate in Congress regardless of who is president. "Statutory damages are in desperate need of change, and the damage to innovation is really high," says Ernesto Falcon, an EFF attorney who focuses on IP issues. "VC's look at litigation risk, and it's copyright is super-risky because of six-figure artificial damages.

But it's hard to get Congress to have the courage to take it up." Guessing at a Trump copyright policy What would we see under a President Trump? The answer is almost entirely speculative for now.
In October, the Trump transition team had a meeting related to tech policy.
Second-hand reports indicate that entertainment industry lobbyists had a vocal presence at that meeting, but Trump's team didn't talk much. As with some other policy areas, we're left guessing at what Trump's position might be like based public statements, his personal history, and the advisers he's surrounded himself with. Here's one unusual reason Trump could actually defend balanced copyright: the "alt-right," the most controversial segment of his supporters, rely on it.

The alt-right grew up the most freewheeling parts of the Internet, like reddit and 4chan.

And while the Trump phenomenon thrived from mainstream media's attention, he's also attacked the media and used the Internet (Twitter particularly) to speak directly to supporters.
Some of the more fringe media figures involved in Trump's campaign, like Roger Stone and Alex Jones, wouldn't really have careers without the Internet. Their followers may have been part of the hundreds of thousands of callers to Congress demanding that they stand down before implementing SOPA.
So, the far right could be advocates for Internet freedom. Another space where Trump shares some territory with copyright reformers is in his staunch opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. But while tech-sector opposition to TPP centered around copyright policies that some view as draconian, Trump's opposition has always had a traditional, anti-free-trade tone.
It suggests he simply believes TPP represents a bad deal for American workers. Putting aside those coincidental overlaps with reformers, there are a lot of reasons to think a President Trump would be a problem for tech in general and the Internet in particular. He's been happy to talk about "closing" the Internet in the name of fighting ISIS, has suggested boycotting Apple, and has been criticizing Amazon and Jeff Bezos for months, largely because of Bezos' ownership of The Washington Post. First of all, unlike traditional Republicans who often philosophically run "against Hollywood," Trump is in many ways a creature of Hollywood.

That means he's likely spent a time surrounded by folks with a more maximalist view of copyright. Former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, for one, is a trusted adviser. Copyright claims have been used, increasingly, as a kind of SLAPP lawsuit to squelch speech.
If anything, Trump has pushed back against free speech and press rights, suggesting he'd like to "open up" libel laws and make it easier to sue news outlets.

Trump regularly threatens libel lawsuits against his critics. While that isn't directly a copyright issue, it does not give reformers much hope. There are two well-known third-party candidates in the race, as well. Libertarian Gary Johnson told Ars in a 2011 interview that his "verdict is out on copyright laws," since they "protect yours and my thoughts, should they be original."  While he said internet freedom was a top priority for him, he As to Green Party candidate Jill Stein, meanwhile, copyrights and patents don't have a place in her platform. A third shot at patent reform? The anti-SOPA revolt notwithstanding, neither Congress nor any potential president has much interest in altering the stalemated copyright landscape, which is likely to upset either the tech or the entertainment sector. In theory, the situation with patents should be different.
In both 2013 and 2015, Congress debated and voted on different types of reforms to a patent litigation system that's widely seen as abused. Bills that would increase transparency, limit venue gamesmanship, protect end-users, and increase fee-shifting were introduced, amended, and found strong support in both parties. In the end, though, neither passed.

The Innovation Act of 2013 passed the House, but it died without a vote in the Senate.

A similar bill in 2015 was passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee, but it got no further despite the Senate's passing from Democratic to Republican control.

Both bills had broad support from the Obama Administration, but neither could win the support of key sectors, including pharmaceuticals, lawyers' groups, and universities. Clinton's platform calls for "additional targeted rule changes" to patent litigation that mirror what Obama supported, and it offers a big chunk of what the tech sector is asking for.
Specifically, Clinton "supports laws to curb forum shopping and ensure that patent litigants have a nexus to the venue in which they are suing; require that specific allegations be made in demand letters and pleadings; and increase transparency in ownership by making patent litigants disclose the real party in interest." She also praises Obama's "efforts to rein in frivolous suits by patent trolls," like the president's creation of a Patent Trial and Appeals Board.

That entity oversees inter partes reviews (IPRs) that allow accused companies to challenge patents at the Patent Office in a way that's far cheaper than court. "That language is comfortable to me, as a pro-reform kind of guy," said a longtime pro-reform tech advocate who didn't want to be named because of ongoing negotiations in DC. "It makes me think her platform is trolls are bad, IPR's are good, the America Invents Act was a good thing, and that we should have venue reform." It's a continuation of the Obama policy, and during a heated campaign, that's about as much as reformers could hope for. It all looks good on paper—but there's a big "but." Some of the advisers Clinton has tapped give reformers pause.

A Politico report on Clinton's team notes that her working group on regulations includes the general counsel of InterDigital, a patent licensing firm that's in the same group as Qualcomm.
InterDigital was a staunch opponent of the 2013 and 2015 patent bills. Another high-profile IP strategist in Clinton's working group is Q.

Todd Dickinson, a former director of the US Patent and Trademark Office under Bill Clinton.

Dickinson praised Clinton's "drill down" on tech and innovation as "maybe unprecedented," but he isn't a personality that pro-reform groups love being close to Clinton.

During debates over the 2013 patent bill, Dickinson was the head of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), an IP lawyers' group that often told Congress concerns about patent trolls were overblown. So where's Trump in all this? Again, it's guesswork. "There's just nobody working on these issues for Trump," Dickinson told Politico in August. Patent policy might be an area that Trump doesn't care much about.

Taking a look at Mike Pence, the Governor of Indiana whom Trump chose as his running mate, may be more instructive. As the former leader of House conservatives, Pence is close to the right wing of the party, and he has a reputation for being someone who's skilled at negotiating with hardline groups like the Freedom Caucus. That could be useful to a President Trump, but nothing suggests Pence would be a friend of patent reform. While GOP House members voted 195-27 in favor of the first patent reform bill, most of the 27 "no" votes came from hardline conservatives, many of who identified as members of the Freedom Caucus. Pence is also a legislative rock-star to the American Conservative Union, another group that opposed patent reform from the right. Tech policy might be a proving ground as to whether a new Congress can work together in 2017.
If Clinton wins the presidency, all signs point to her facing at least one house of Congress controlled by Republicans. Will Congress support her on at least a few matters where majorities of both parties agree—like patent reform? Or, will Congress stay mired in a state of hyper-partisan inaction? Tech policy will be a kind of proving ground.