03.03.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Apple Chastised Even by Its Own Advocates for Suing Linux Using Software Patents

Posted in Apple, GNU/Linux, Google, Patents at 5:40 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Steve Ballmer

Steve Jobs
Original photo by Matthew Yohe, modified by Boycott Novell

Summary: Apple’s highly unnecessary lawsuit has the company suffer wrath and flak, including some from its own supporters

EARLIER today we wrote about Apple suing Linux phones using software patents. But Apple is using a bunch of very lousy patents (here is a detailed list of all the patents).

“My favorite is #7,657,849, filed less than a month ago, covering unlocking a device by performing a gesture,” said the president of the FFII, who linked to this short article from CIO Weblog, aptly titled “An embarrassment of patents”

Bad as the patent system may be, it might be the only recourse available for Apple to justify the invention of such a device. There’s no way, at least so far as I know, to patent the totality of a thing like that, and anyway such a patent must necessarily be excessively broad. But I find it hard to say that Apple should not be rewarded with some measure of exclusivity for creating this genre of smartphone. Twenty years, the standard term, seems to long in this day and age, but say five years, perhaps; certainly a killer product with a lock on the market can make its creation worthwhile in such a time span.

Matt Asay, usually a big fan of everything from Apple, does not defend Apple here. “I’m very consistent on this,” he told me, “I hate using the law as a biz club. Legal recourse is a sign of failure”

When a bunch of lawyers, whose occupation is interpretation of words and patent legalese (this one is funny and new!), take precedence at the expense of engineers, then clearly we have a defective patent system and commercial paradigm that relies on it.

The most upsetting thing perhaps is that Steve Jobs himself describes Apple as an innovative victim. The reactions to this (from several hours ago) can be seen below.


Boycott Novell logo

IRC: #boycottnovell @ FreeNode: March 2nd, 2010

-BNtwitter/#boycottnovell-[zoobab] Steve Jobs: We can sit by and watch competitors steal our patented inventions, or we can do something about it: http://i5.be/ayz Mar 03 13:56
phIRCe-BNc Title: Apple Sues Phone Maker HTC Over Patents – Bits Blog – NYTimes.com .::. Size~: 74.22 KB Mar 03 13:56
DaemonFC what did Apple invent? Mar 03 13:58
Diablo-D3 nothing Mar 03 13:59
DaemonFC “Cellphone makers have been playing catchup to the iPhone since it was introduced in June 2007″ Mar 03 14:00
DaemonFC knee slapper Mar 03 14:00
DaemonFC I’d rather not pay $500 for a phone with less features than the one I have :) Mar 03 14:00
Diablo-D3 yarly Mar 03 14:01
-BNtwitter/#boycottnovell-[zoobab] Most of the patents that Apple is using against HTC are software patents: http://i5.be/ayA Mar 03 14:02
phIRCe-BNc Title: Apple HTC Suit Gallery -  - Gizmodo .::. Size~: 75.34 KB Mar 03 14:02
oiaohm Was anyone majorally using a linked app store before iphone Mar 03 14:02
Diablo-D3 no, and no one is now! dooooohohohohohoho! Mar 03 14:03
DaemonFC who cares? Mar 03 14:03
DaemonFC I need an app that farts when I push the button Mar 03 14:03
DaemonFC (they have that in the app store) Mar 03 14:03
MinceR it’s an interesting kind of “catchup” Mar 03 14:04
DaemonFC I need an app that turns my phone into a compass (because the ones at the dollar store have an annoying tendency to work all the time) Mar 03 14:04
MinceR such as releasing a pda/phone that does more than the hypePhone and costs less, before the first hypePhone was announced Mar 03 14:04
MinceR i’d love to play “catchup” that way Mar 03 14:04
DaemonFC Apple has invented nothing, they’ve filed for patent troll style patents Mar 03 14:05
MinceR i wonder how many people use fart sounds as their ringtone Mar 03 14:05
DaemonFC MinceR, They need to make a ringtone that says “Follow the sound of my voice and stab the person holding the phone repeatedly” Mar 03 14:05
MinceR lol Mar 03 14:05
DaemonFC and make sure you can’t change that Mar 03 14:05
DaemonFC it would never go past the first ring :) Mar 03 14:06
Diablo-D3 just change it to its a small world Mar 03 14:06
Diablo-D3 wont get past the second stanza Mar 03 14:06
*oiaohm has quit (Remote host closed the connection) Mar 03 14:06
MinceR won’t “i’m a bitch of steve jobs” work as well? Mar 03 14:06
DaemonFC change it that “I like big butts” song Mar 03 14:07
MinceR the visuals say so already Mar 03 14:07
Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

A Single Comment

  1. Jose_X said,

    March 4, 2010 at 7:53 am

    Gravatar

    I posted the following comment at the cio-weblog site:

    *****
    Aborting Monopoly Grants is more than simply the Right Thing to do.

    Putting aside software, business method, and other generally ridiculous classes of patents, I think what we should be attempting, if we want to promote the progress of science and useful arts, is to look towards a reward and incentive mechanism that does not tie-up 100,000 inventors every time we want to reward one. We can do things like give tax credits, prizes, and, perhaps more practically, even some degree of market share guarantees or short-term price subsidies.

    Let us note that market share guarantees could allow others to develop a market much faster than that sole person could under a monopoly mechanism; thus, the sole person getting the automatic market share slice guarantee could definitely benefit this person extra this way (without having to deal with resource and time costly lawsuits whose mere threat even stagnate). Meanwhile, if that sole person did succeed tremendously (eg, through first mover gains), then there really would be no need to help them further. In either case, note that the motivation was there because of the significant safety net(s) and potential extra upside. Even better, we didn’t hold back the wall of progress and abridge rights. I mean do we really think that the only thing of value (remember, we are giving exclusivity to it for 20 years) in creating better products and markets is this so called single godlike “inventor” or even inventing? What about all the other people sweating and taking risks and many times not even coming out ahead or too far ahead?

    Also, a sliding scale could be used, eg, where we give larger guarantees (but not generally near 100%) for the first year or months and then work the guarantees down to zero throughout the next 5 to 10 year period.

    And if the government and private sector have developed extremely detailed categorizations of products and markets and income streams, surely we could leverage and extend that as necessary, right? Some agency could handle the day to day issues that might arise in fast moving or brand new market/product classes. The USPTO would be put to better use doing less damage this way and perhaps even contributing positively!!!

    It makes no sense to give a monopoly (of any significant duration) to the first person to file a general idea of how something works. Meanwhile, you have others that have already invested years in thinking about and perhaps actually creating refined versions of inventions that do/would fall under such a patented general broad description. It’s always easier/quicker to come up with the broad description.

    Plus, can the most brilliant inventor truly be the first to write down invention ideas/claims in all but a fraction of the cases (and still have time to develop and implement and sleep etc)? Of course not! Should we annul many brilliant future inventions because those people best fit for the job were distracted with something else other than writing up 1,000,000 million patent claims yearly (an impossibility) just to cover all ground where they might make significant contributions over the next 20 years? And let’s not forget that the top inventor is dwarfed by the combined contributions of the next 10 working together.

    In an Internet world, we should be rewarding exploitation of the powerful new ways that exist to collaborate. Monopolies run contradictory to this.

    Finally, who invents in a vacuum? There are a great many little and very significant insights that occur along the way to a final invention, and many of these little steps only happen in any given individual’s mind because of the constant influence from other members of society (ideas “ripped off” from others, casual conversation and feedback, as well as math and other understandings developed almost entirely by others) as well as from external forces and experiences that are also having an impact on others.

    I mean someone must be first, but how fair is a monopoly to those that came or would have come in 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 21th, 22th, 23th, 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th, 31th, 32th, 33th, 34th, 35th, 36th, 37th, 38th, 39th, 40th, 41th, 42th, 43th, 44th, 45th, 46th, 47th, 48th, 49th, 50th, 51th, 52th, 53th, or 54th?

    Do we really think these other people deserve to get nothing? Do we really think giving control of the market solely to number 1 will benefit society? I mean, gold gets virtually all of the glory in the Olympics, but does that person at the top this month really contribute all that much more to make up for everyone else’s contributions?

    Should we force all others into hibernation for 20 years because of a monopoly grant to the gold medal winner? “Sorry, move on to a new sport. Invent a new sport because this one has now been awarded exclusively to Hans Dawn for the next 20 years.”

    Maybe 70% of the market is awarded 30%,15%,15%,10% to the top four “inventors” or significant contributors the first year.. with eventually only 5% of the market being reserved (as a *guarantee*) for these folks by year 7?

    Monopolies stifle. We believe in a competitive system and obviously recognize that the supporting crews and competition losers make possible this month’s gold medal winning moment in the first place. We believe in freedoms and liberties. Let us not forget that guaranteed monopolies, a too powerful of a prize, will likely lead to dirty play and a total misallocation of resources by some in order to win this prize. Further, the winner will then have significant incentives to sit on his/her rear end or go at snail speed for the majority of the next 20 years. No dice, if you ask me.
    *****

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. [Meme] IBM Has Paid ZDNet to Troll the Community

    Over the past few weeks ZDNet has constantly published courses with the word "master" in their headlines (we caught several examples; a few are shown above); years ago this was common, also in relation to IBM itself; clearly IBM thinks that the word is racially sensitive and offensive only when it's not IBM using the word and nowadays IBM pays ZDNet — sometimes proxying through the Linux Foundation — to relay this self-contradictory message whose objective is to shame programmers, Free software communities etc. (through guilt they can leverage more power and resort to projection tactics, sometimes outright slander which distracts)



  2. [Meme] ILO Designed to Fail: EPO Presidents Cannot be Held Accountable If ILOAT Takes Almost a Decade to Issue a Simple Ruling

    The recent ILOAT ruling (a trivial no-brainer) inadvertently reminds one of the severe weaknesses of ILOAT; what good is a system of accountability that issues rulings on decisions that are barely relevant anymore (or too late to correct)?



  3. Links 22/10/2021: Trump's AGPL Violations and Chrome 95 Released

    Links for the day



  4. [Meme] How Corporate Monopolies Demonise Critics of Their Technically and Legally Problematic 'Products'

    When the technical substance of some criticism stands (defensible based upon evidence), and is increasingly difficult to refute based on facts, make up some fictional issue — a straw man argument — and then respond to that phony issue based on no facts at all



  5. Links 22/10/2021: Global Encryption Day

    Links for the day



  6. [Meme] Speaking the Same Language

    Language inside the EPO is misleading. Francophones Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos casually misuse the word “social”.



  7. António Campinos Thinks Salary Reductions Months Before He Leaves is “Exceptional Social Gesture”

    Just as Benoît Battistelli had a profound misunderstanding of the concept of “social democracy” his mate seems to completely misunderstand what a “social gesture” is (should have asked his father)



  8. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, October 21, 2021

    IRC logs for Thursday, October 21, 2021



  9. Links 21/10/2021: MX Linux 21 and Git Contributors’ Summit in a Nutshell

    Links for the day



  10. [Meme] [Teaser] Miguel de Icaza on CEO of Microsoft GitHub

    Our ongoing series, which is very long, will shed much-needed light on GitHub and its goals (the dark side is a lot darker than people care to realise)



  11. Gemini Protocol and Gemini Space Are Not a Niche; for Techrights, Gemini Means Half a Million Page Requests a Month

    Techrights on gemini:// has become very big and we’ll soon regenerate all the pages (about 37,500 of them) to improve clarity, consistency, and general integrity



  12. 'Satellite States' of EPO Autocrats

    Today we look more closely at how Baltic states were rendered 'voting fodder' by large European states, looking to rubber-stamp new and oppressive measures which disempower the masses



  13. [Meme] Don't Mention 'Brexit' to Team UPC

    It seems perfectly clear that UPC cannot start, contrary to what the EPO‘s António Campinos told the Council last week (lying, as usual) and what the EPO insinuates in Twitter; in fact, a legal challenge to this should be almost trivial



  14. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part IXX: The Baltic States

    How unlawful EPO rules were unsurprisingly supported by Benoît Battistelli‘s friends in Baltic states; António Campinos maintained those same unlawful rules and Baltic connections, in effect liaising with offices known for their corruption (convicted officials, too; they did not have diplomatic immunity, unlike Battistelli and Campinos)



  15. Links 21/10/2021: GIMP 2.99.8 Released, Hardware Shortages, Mozilla Crisis

    Links for the day



  16. How Oppressive Governments and Web Monopolists Might Try to Discourage Adoption of Internet Protocols Like Gemini

    Popular movements and even some courageous publications have long been subverted by demonisation tactics, splits along unrelated grounds (such as controversial politics) and — failing that — technical sabotage and censorship; one must familiarise oneself with commonly-recurring themes of social control by altercation



  17. [Meme] Strike Triangulations, Reception Issues

    Financial strangulations for Benoît Battistelli‘s unlawful “Strike Regulations”? The EPO will come to regret 2013…



  18. [Meme] Is Saying “No!” to Unlawful Proposals Considered “Impolite”?

    A ‘toxic mix’ of enablers and cowards (who won’t vote negatively on EPO proposals which they know to be unlawful) can serve to show that the EPO isn’t a “social democracy” as Benoît Battistelli liked to call it; it’s just a dictatorship, currently run by the son of a person who actually fought dictatorship



  19. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, October 20, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, October 20, 2021



  20. [Meme] EPO Legal Sophistry and Double Dipping

    An imaginary EPO intercept of Administrative Council discussions in June 2013...



  21. Links 21/10/2021: PostgreSQL JDBC 42.3.0 and Maui Report

    Links for the day



  22. [Meme] [Teaser] “Judge a Person Both by His Friends and Enemies”

    Fervent supporters of Team Battistelli or Team Campinos (a dark EPO era) are showing their allegiances; WIPO and EPO have abused staff similarly over the past decade or so



  23. 'Cluster-Voting' in the European Patent Office/Organisation (When a Country With 1.9 Million Citizens Has the Same Voting Power as a Country With 83.1 Million Citizens)

    Today we examine who has been running the Finnish patent office and has moreover voted in the EPO during the ballot on unlawful "Strike Regulations"; they voted in favour of manifestly illegal rules and for 8.5 years after that (including last Wednesday) they continued to back a shady regime which undermines the EPO's mission statement



  24. The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion — Part XVIII: Helsinki's Accord

    The Finnish outpost has long been strategic to the EPO because it can help control the vote of four or more nations; evidence suggests this has not changed



  25. [Meme] Living as a Human Resource, Working for Despots

    The EPO has become a truly awful place/employer to work for; salary is 2,000 euros for some (despite workplace stress, sometimes relocation to a foreign country)



  26. Links 20/10/2021: New Redcore Linux and Hospital Adoption of GNU Health

    Links for the day



  27. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, October 19, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, October 19, 2021



  28. Links 19/10/2021: Karanbir Singh Leaves CentOS Board, GPL Violations at Vizio

    Links for the day



  29. [Meme] Giving the Knee

    The 'knee' champion Kratochvìl and 'kneel' champion Erlingsdóttir are simply crushing the law; they’re ignoring the trouble of EPO staff and abuses of the Office, facilitated by the Council itself (i.e. facilitated by themselves)



  30. Josef Kratochvìl Rewarded Again for Covering Up EPO Corruption and the EPO Bribes the Press for Lies Whilst Also Lying About Its Colossal Privacy Violations

    Corrupt officials and officials who actively enable the crimes still control the Office and also the body which was supposed to oversee it; it's pretty evident and clear judging by this week's press statements at the EPO's official Web site


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts