[Fourth Branch] Here to Stay: The Modern World of Hospitality

Do home-sharing platforms like Airbnb need more regulation to protect consumers and the safety of local communities? How can the interests of private property owners, consumers, and small businesses be balanced? What might an optimal level of regulation look like, and who decides?

In this Fourth Branch video, Gwendolyn Smith (Grandview Bed & Breakfast), Matthew Feeney (Cato Institute), and Pete Clarke (Retired Commissioner, Orange County, FL) explore the legal and regulatory questions that have accompanied the rise of home-sharing platforms.

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[Fourth Branch] The Financial Frontier: Financial Freedom, Payday Lending, & “Operation Choke Point”

In 2013, the U.S. Department of Justice decided to investigate banks across the country, looking into the business they did with payday lenders. While payday loans are controversial, they are legal in most circumstances. Proponents of this campaign celebrate the push as crucial for consumer protection. Critics claim it sets a dangerous precedent by unfairly targeting lawful businesses. Jamie Fulmer (Advance America), Chris Peterson (The University of Utah), and Brian Knight (Mercatus Center) explore the questions behind “Operation Choke Point”.

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[Fourth Branch] Waters of the United States: Interpreting the Clean Water Act

What is the Clean Water Act? Have historical interpretations of its scope changed over the years? What are the practical effects of those interpretations on the environment, farmers, and landowners? How is this issue relevant today? Donald Kochan and Robert Glicksman explore these questions as they discuss the scope of the Clean Water Act.

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[Fourth Branch] How Do Markets Respond to Patents?

Does the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) review process influence how markets respond to patents? Can the PTAB be abused by those looking to profit off of the review process? Saurabh Vishnubhakat, Associate Professor of Law, Texas A&M University School of Law, weighs in on these questions.

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[Fourth Branch] Determining Patent Quality

What are the boundaries of a patent? What factors are involved when determining patent quality? Saurabh Vishnubhakat, Associate Professor of Law, Texas A&M University School of Law, discusses these questions and elaborates on three types of patent quality: technological, economic, and legal value.

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[Fourth Branch] The Founding Fathers as Economic Innovators

Adam Mossoff, Professor of Law, Antonin Scalia Law School, describes how the Founding Fathers viewed a patent system based on property rights as crucial to the creation and preservation of a flourishing innovation economy.

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[Video] Introduction to the IT & Emerging Technology Working Group

Gregory McNeal is the Chairman of RTP’s IT & Emerging Technology working group and Professor of Law and Public Policy, Pepperdine University. In this short video, he discusses the crucial importance of emerging technologies to human progress and how regulations influence the development of these innovative and transformative ventures.

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[Fourth Branch] Enforcing Patents for Bunch O Balloons

Josh Malone, inventor of Bunch O Balloons, describes his struggle to enforce the patents for Bunch O Balloons. Is Josh’s experience typical for US inventors? Is the process of protecting one’s invention straightforward? How might this process be improved? A number of intellectual property experts join Josh in elaborating on these questions.

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[Fourth Branch] Regulating Planesharing: A Conversation on Regulation and Innovation

In a world of drone delivery and self-driving cars, do innovation and regulation need to be at odds with one another? Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and a variety of other experts weigh in on this critical discussion.

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[Fourth Branch] Innovation in the US Patent System

How does the US patent system affect inventors and innovators? Does the patent system promote or stifle innovation? Josh Malone, inventor of Bunch O Balloons, and a variety of intellectual property experts weigh in on this important topic.

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