EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

10.27.11

Patents Roundup: Microsoft Patents PR, Red Hat/Groklaw’s Response, and Apple’s Slide to Unlock Thermonuclear War

Posted in Apple, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, Patents at 3:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Rainbow troll

Summary: Microsoft pays more lobbyists to encourage software patents, Microsoft Jack defends racketeering, and Apple’s lust for patents becomes a serious issue

WITH THE seminal goal of pointing out and countering FUD, we are still naming people whom people should watch out for because of their funding sources or agenda.

One publisher that we mention quite a lot is IDG (parent of IDC). It appoints Microsoft boosters to run an “open source” blog and it shows. Julie, for example, is their latest writer to do a Ubuntu FUD marathon, succeeding Tony in a sense (he did that some months ago for 30 consecutive days). Julie also runs the Microsoft blog and has run it for years. It’s where she comes from and where she still writes primarily. Not so long ago she trolled Jim Zemlin in her headline. We wish we could keep the credibility index up to date, but people whom we add to it choose to feel insulted and then smear us, which makes it a somewhat unwise strategy. Julie is not alone in this. The pro-Microsoft bloggers from IDG (pretending to be pro-FOSS) carry on bashing Ubuntu in another new IDG marathon of Ubuntu FUD and now Android FUD too (using patents against Android). Expect more of the same. We wrote about those writers before, One of those Microsoft boosters from the same network is now infecting Ars Technica. People who are unfamiliar with his past repertoire will not understand that there is bias there. Unsuspecting readers tend to be unaware of affiliations and they can only ever assume that a writer on a particular topic has no conflict of interest. It is bad enough when publication get misused for promoting one’s agenda; it’s even worse when these get misused to attack the opposition’s agenda, under the veil of “objectivity” or “journalism”. This applies to both sides and there is no hypocrisy here. Most people probably know that Intellectual Ventures, for example, is very much tied to Microsoft and also to Lodsys, whose attacks by proxy on Android are not being overlooked by Groklaw, whose new editor does have a little conflict of interest because of the funding sources of Peer to Patent. None of this is secret and in his latest post he tackles Lodsys’ attack on Android (among others), summarising as follows:

New York Times v. Lodsys

This case has been dismissed without prejudice by the consent of the parties and by order of the court. New York Times v. Lodsys (N.D. Ill.) (38 [PDF; Text]) The Eastern District of Texas case between these parties remains pending.

OpinionLab v. Lodsys

As with the New York Times case, the parties have stipulated to a dismissal with prejudice of this case, OpinionLab v. Lodsys (N.D. Ill.). (45 [PDF; Text]) The Eastern District of Texas case between these parties remains pending.

ForeSee v. Lodsys

Instead of a dismissal, in ForeSee v. Lodsys (N.D. Ill.) the parties have stipulated to a transfer of venue of this case to the Eastern District of Wisconsin where several other DJ actions remain pending against Lodsys. (45 [PDF; Text]) As a part of the stipulation, Lodsys has retained its right to seek a further transfer of venue to the E.D. Texas where Lodsys’s complaint against ForeSee remains pending. The other interesting point in this stipulation is that Lodsys has stipulated that ForeSee’s DJ action could have been brought in the Eastern District of Wisconsin, which should help the other DJ plaintiffs in that venue (Wolfram, RightNow).

LivePerson v. Lodsys

The one case still remaining in the E.D. of Illinois is the LivePerson declaratory judgment action against Lodsys.

Over in Europe, following the distasteful decision in the UK [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] there are British patent lawyers who smell the pounds and encircle software developers like vultures, saying:

This piece is not about what happens should you lose your mind and decide to perform a zany, dangerous practical joke at the Hearing Officer’s expense. No, the “mental acts” the IPKat is concerned with are those mentioned in Article 52(2)(c) EPC among the exclusions from patentability, which were recently considered in the Halliburton decision from HHJ Birss QC (reported here).

British patent lawyers will find new victims to leech in their parasitical ways. It is sad, but there is not much that can be done about it other than protest. The plutocrats still write the laws that govern our lives and if multinationals along with their lawyers (lawmakers and politicians are usually lawyers) decide to screw over 99% of the population, they will.

This is not pure speculation. Watch how Microsoft pays Microsoft Florian to help them bamboozle politicians, gaming the system for some money. Yes, Microsoft pays him to do this (a bit like passing a bribe for the work he has done, under the guise of “consulting contract”) and the same goes for the Business Software Alliance (BSA), which we now learn is lobbying again for software patents in Europe.

According to the president of the FFII, the BSA makes its move:

BSA lobbyist writing “studies” for the European Commission on software patents and standards ur1.ca/5i2it

The BSA is a Microsoft front group. There is also this subsequent update:

BSA lobbyist Benoit Muller writing “studies” for the European Commission on software patents and standards ur1.ca/5i2it

Microsoft Jack — just like Microsoft’s lobbyists — promotes Microsoft racketeering in blog comments in ZDNet right now. Apparently these people are not taught ethics in journalism school, so the cult of Microsoft comes first. We oughtn’t allow people like Microsoft Jack ‘normalise’ racketeering, making it described as a standard procedure in the “real world”. Some of those Microsoft lobbyists have a hard task of making crime seem like “business as usual”.

This is something that we wrote about earlier this week and last week. It’s like some sort of PR campaign and Jay from the 451 Group tries to look at the glass half full by writing this iffy response:

There’s been a lot of attention on the amount of money Microsoft is making from Android, including Microsoft’s own proclamations. Maybe it’s just that I’m more of a fan of Linux and open source software, or maybe I’m overly focused on the lawsuits and threats against Android, but I see serious downsides to all of those dollars for Microsoft from Android.

I believe Microsoft’s strategy to pursue patent licensing deals rather than sue, as we’ve seen from Apple, may prove to be a more effective strategy. Rather than limit or destroy Android, Microsoft is actually supporting its growth, meaning more Android devices and users in the market. Since it’s making so much money from Android, Microsoft may be less interested in limiting or attacking it, so that’s a benefit to Android. However, I do see some significant drawbacks to Microsoft’s Android strategy, all of which serve to limit Microsoft’s opportunity in the future.

Agree or disagree with Jay, what Microsoft does is extortion and it should be reported for the authorities to handle as soon as possible. This really requires US intervention because Microsoft is a US-based company. But need we hold our breath while the vast majority of Americans believe that money buys results and companies do whatever they want with their elected/appointed government?

We keep seeing patent promotion in press releases, vanity posts and announcements, realising perhaps that while the corporate press (with propaganda like this from Bloomberg) help reinforces an industry where ideas are”property” and are to be monopolised, then “sold” or “licensed”. This is the same corporate press which calls sharing “piracy” and refuses to accept that there is another perspective which is legitimate and even plausible.

There is news right now about Klausner (a patent troll) suing Oracle and HP over ideas. Red Hat is meanwhile sharing some thoughts on the software patents situation in the United States. Its blogger/staff writes:

Last week, I participated in a panel discussion at the Eastern District of Texas/Federal Circuit Joint Bench-Bar Conference in Dallas. The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is the specialized appellate court for patent cases. My panel was on corporate counsel opinions of patent litigation and recent judicial and legislative patent reform. The discussion was moderated by Judge Richard Linn of the Federal Circuit. It was a great opportunity to present some views of the patent system, and to provide options for improvement to the very people who can enact judicial change.

In my remarks, I pointed out that while there have been some significant judicial changes over the last five years (regarding damages, injunctions, obviousness, indirect infringement, and willfulness), much is still needed. As my colleague Rob Tiller has repeatedly discussed software patents exact considerable costs to innovation in this country. Although we are still waging the war on patent coverage for software, other battles are also in play, which I present here.

Tiller and his colleague are sadly enough not proposing the elimination of all software patents. Maybe they just don’t want to aim this high in an event which is clearly affected by the cult of patents, to which Apple sites mostly subscribe (because the cult of Apple says so). Apple’s patents boosters still worship Steve Jobs’ patents while Android sites voice concerns about Apple’s “slide to lock” patent, arguing: “Using the words “convoluted” or “confusing” to describe the patent battles going on in the mobile space might be going a little easy on them. Everywhere it seems companies are suing one another over anything they can think of, while others collect license fees from device and software makers just looking to avoid ending up in court. Just about everyone owns a small number of the patents necessary to create a smartphone or a tablet, and they’re all constantly at war over them.

“But a new patent just awarded to Apple brings a whole new level of pain to the game. According to a story from ZDnet, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office just issued Apple a patent for a design feature that’s found on every iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad, as well as just about every single Android device currently in existence: “slide to unlock.”

“This is the feature on touchscreen devices that requires users to “unlock” the device by sliding a thumb over a specific section of the screen, where it looks like they’re moving a button from one position to another. The slide feature has been widely adopted because it’s both simple and genius – it’s hard to accidentally unlock your phone in your pocket and start making inadvertent calls with the “slide to unlock” feature in place.”

Apple has gone too far and Techrights takes this very seriously because Steve Jobs’ made it his top goal to obliterate Android/Linux. For a guy who disowned his daughter by lying about being “sterile”, Steve Jobs is far too widely admired. His real legacy, as far as we are concerned, is a "thermonuclear" patent war that harms Linux.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

A Single Comment

  1. Michael said,

    October 27, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Gravatar

    FUD:

    ITH THE seminal goal of pointing out and countering FUD, we are still naming people whom people should watch out for because of their funding sources or agenda.

    LOL! Really, the irony there is amazing. You might sometimes point out other’s FUD, but as I have documented quite well you post massive amounts of FUD. You then pretend to not be responding as you call me names and ask others to ignore me. The reason why is clear: you know I am at least mostly right. It is not as if you really believe your own claims. The only way it can be said that you “counter FUD” is if you fight fire with fire. Just silly.

    Take your above article where you just assume – with *no* support – that anyone who writes about Windows and Linux *must* have a Windows bias. Why? It makes no sense. Complete FUD. But it is what you do. Anyone who writes about OSS in a way you do not like *must*, in your view, be “pretending” to be pro-FOSS.

    I have been a target of this claim from you. I am very pro open source – if it is as good as or better than the competition I am all over it. I am happy Apple uses it in OS X and Safari and in other packages. I am happy to run my websites on Apache / Linux. I think open source software and the open source philosophy, as expressed by Linus Torvalds and Mark Shuttleworth is amazing and a huge benefit to technology.

    But I do not share your desire to attack Microsoft (in other words, I agree with Linus). And this, to you, somehow makes me anti-FOSS.

    It is insane. Paranoid. You have a very strong with-us or against-us view of the world. Black and white. People are placed in piles labeled “Good” and “Evil” in your world.

    PS: Roy has asked people to not respond to those who criticize him, so be aware that if you respond to this comment of mine Roy might place you in his “Evil” pile. If so, fine by me… I do not want all people to like me and would think less of myself if some people did. :)

    Heck, look at how Roy attacks Jobs’ personal life because, gasp!, he disagrees with a patent they were awarded. Something very, very sick to be in the same camp as Roy. Count me out!

What Else is New


  1. Links 31/7/2014: Zorin OS Educational 9, Android Nearing 90% Share

    Links for the day



  2. Microsoft-Linked Codenomicon and Bluebox in the Business of Smearing FOSS/Linux/Android

    odenomicon and Bluebox, two companies with strong Microsoft links, fill the media with negative articles about Android



  3. Is Microsoft Being Raided Not Just for Anti-Competitive Reasons but for Bribes and Back Doors?

    News about raids in Microsoft China mostly lacking when it comes to background, context, and information about Microsoft's crimes in China



  4. Former Microsoft Engineer Working on Windows BitLocker Confirms Government Asks Microsoft for Back Doors

    Recalling the times when even Microsoft staff spoke about secret government collaborations and back doors



  5. Ruling Against 'Abstract' Software Patents is Already Derailing Patent Attacks on Linux and Free Software

    Patent litigation against Android/Linux impeded by the introduction of arguments that cite the Supreme Court



  6. Links 30/7/2014: Chris Beard as CEO of Mozilla

    Links for the day



  7. New Optimism in the Age of Doubt Over Software Patents

    As the tide turns against software patents, even in their country of origin, their opponents come out of the woodwork to celebrate



  8. Links 28/7/2014: New Linux RC, Plasma 5 Live in Kubuntu

    Links for the day



  9. Links 27/7/2014: KDE 4.14 Beta 3, KDE 4.14 Beta 3 Released

    Links for the day



  10. Apple and Microsoft Are Proprietary Software Companies and the Media Should Stop Openwashing Them

    New examples where proprietary software giants are characterised as FOSS-embracing and FOSS-friendly by gullible or dishonest 'journalists'



  11. Bloomberg's Microsoft Propaganda

    Bloomberg delivers 'damage control' and PR ahead of the layoffs announcement; Microsoft uses Nokia to hide it and Bloomberg helps Microsoft by radically modifying headlines



  12. Frequency of Browser Back Doors in Microsoft Windows is Doubling

    The vulnerabilities which Microsoft tells the NSA about (before these are patched) are significantly growing in terms of their numbers



  13. FUD Entities Entering the FOSS World

    Symantec enters the AllSeen Alliance and Sonatype is once again trying to claim great insecurity in FOSS due to software licensing



  14. Groklaw Back in the Wake of ODF in the UK?

    Renewed activity in FOSS-leaning legal site Groklaw amid numerous victories for FOSS



  15. Links 26/7/2014: New Wine, Chromebooks Strong Sales

    Links for the day



  16. Links 25/7/2014: GOG With GNU/Linux, Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS

    Links for the day



  17. Links 24/7/2014: Oracle Linux 7; Fedora Delays

    Links for the day



  18. Valerie Strauss Explains Why Gates Foundation's Lobbying for 'Common Core' (Privatisation) is a Swindle That Makes Microsoft Richer

    Continued criticism of the Gates Foundation's lobbying and masquerading, with more journalists brave enough to highlight the corruption



  19. USPTO Officially Sets New Guidelines to Limit Scope of Software Patents in the United States

    Even patent lawyers finally acknowledge that the incentive to file software patent applications has been reduced, as the scope of patents on software has been noticeably narrowed and they are harder to acquire, let alone enforce in a courtroom



  20. UK Government Adopts OpenDocument Format (ODF) and Microsoft Already Attacks the Government Over It, Showing Absolutely No Commitment to Open Standards

    Only "Microsoft as the standard" is the 'standard' Microsoft is willing to accept, as its response to the Cabinet Office's judgment reveals



  21. Microsoft Layoffs of 2014

    Another quick look at Microsoft's horrible state of affairs and why it has virtually nothing to do with Nokia



  22. Links 22/7/2014: Linux 3.16 RC 6, New UberStudent

    Links for the day



  23. Links 20/7/2014: Jolla in India, Mega Censored in Italy

    Links for the day



  24. Longtime Mono Booster Joins Microsoft-linked Xamarin

    Jo Shields almost joins Microsoft, settling instead for its proxy, Xamarin



  25. Linux Foundation Welcomes Patent Aggressor Red Bend Software

    The Linux Foundation's AllSeen Alliance welcomes as a member a company that uses software patents to sue Free/Open Source software



  26. Matt Levy From Patent Progress (and CCIA) Does Not Really Want Patent Progress

    Matthew ('Matt') Levy moved into a foe of patent progress last year, but he still runs a site calls Patent Progress, in which he diverts all attention to patent trolls (as large corporations such as Microsoft like to do)



  27. Attacking FOSS by Ignoring/Overlooking Issues With Proprietary Software

    The biasing strategy which continues to be used to demonise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) along with some new examples



  28. Links 19/7/2014: CRUX 3.1 is Out, CyanogenMod Competes With Google Now

    Links for the day



  29. Microsoft's Massive Layoffs Go Far Beyond Nokia; Nokia's Android Phones Axed by Microsoft's Elop

    Microsoft's rapid demise and permanent exit from Nokia's last remaining Linux platform (after Microsoft had killed two more)



  30. Patents on Software Already Being Invalidated in Courts Owing to SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Patents

    The Federal Circuit Appeals Court has just "invalidated a software patent for being overly abstract," says a patents expert


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts