It's essential that the US patent system is adjusted. There is a large and growing business (it perhaps should be called an industry) that buys flimsy patents and then makes laughable claims of infringement by legitimate businesses.
The costs associated with fighting these claims are so high that many companies settle for less than the costs associated with the fight.
The whole system is a sham and a very real break on the competitiveness of the US; it also confuses the situation for "proper" patent-holders. Let's hope Washington can think for themselves for once and not get swayed by silver-tongued lobbying scoundrels.
Recent academic studies suggest that patent trolls, which target everyone from big tech companies to small town coffee houses, have cost the economy billions of dollars. Congress attempted to fix the problem with the America Invents Act, signed by President Obama in 2011, but the law proved ineffective, leading to the current push for reform. Meanwhile, the giant patent troll Intellectual Ventures is pouring money into a lobbying vehicles to promote its business model.