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

12.20.15

Software Patents Are Being Defeated to the Detriment of Large Multinationals, Their Patent Lawyers, and Patent Trolls Who Piggyback Them

Posted in America, Asia, Patents at 7:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

SFLC India

Summary: Updates on the patent situation in India and in the United States, with special emphasis on software patents, or vague patents on abstract concepts which are, in effect, reducible to logic/mathematics

INDIA’S ‘branch’ of SFLC was recently given credit here for helping to crush software patents, which multinational software giants like IBM or Microsoft (monopolists in particular areas) are actively lobbying for. SFLC.in managed to halt or at least slow down some very incredible forces. According to this new article from them (accompanied by the #NoSoftwarePatents hashtag): “On 14th December 2015, the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks, Mr. Om Prakash Gupta, ordered that the recently released 2015 “Guidelines for Examination of Computer Related Inventions (CRIs)” shall be kept in abeyance till discussions with stakeholders are completed and contentious issues with respect to the 2015 Guidelines are resolved (order available here). SFLC.in highly appreciates the efforts made by the Indian Patent Office in considering the feedback given by civil society organisations and the Indian software product industry. . This is a very welcome, albeit first, step taken by the Government towards ensuring that the Indian software industry continues to enjoy the freedom to innovate and is not shackled by irregular patents granted in the area of software.”

“SFLC.in managed to halt or at least slow down some very incredible forces.”We wish to congratulate SFLC.in for its excellent work. Well done!

In the United States, ‘home’ of software patents, things are rapidly changing right now, as both software patents and patent trolls get somewhat of a smackdown, even without involvement by Congress*.

Chuck Soder, the technology reporter at Crain’s Cleveland Business, has just published this new article that says: “Judges across the country are striking down software patents in the name of a U.S. Supreme Court decision that is changing how some tech companies protect their ideas.”

“In the United States, ‘home’ of software patents, things are rapidly changing right now, as both software patents and patent trolls get somewhat of a smackdown, even without involvement by Congress.”Soder adds that “[j]udges are invalidating patents [...] and that’s “kind of scary,” according to Christopher Comiskey, a patent attorney at Thompson Hine, which is representing MacroPoint.”

Well, of course it’s scary to patent lawyers. They make money from patent wars and stockpiling.

“Though he [Comiskey] wouldn’t comment on that case,” Soder writes, “he noted that judges are making decisions on patent validity without citing outside evidence and expert testimony. That’s “disturbing,” given how much time and money companies put into getting those patents, Comiskey said.”

“Well, of course it’s scary to patent lawyers. They make money from patent wars and stockpiling.”Well, Comiskey is basically in the same category as patent parasites, much like trolls. Comiskey does not create anything, he is just trying to make living from litigation and sometimes by tricking examiners or judges (because many of these patents are not really patent-eligible as per the examiners’ guidelines)

Empirically speaking, software patents lead to patent trolling, which is an activity mostly centered around Texas [1, 2, 3, 4]. “In a first,” writes an expert in the area of patent trolls, “East Texas judge hits patent troll with attorneys’ fees” (referring to eDekka LLC, which we covered here before, e.g. in this recent or that older post). He says that “The most litigious “patent troll” of 2014 has been effectively shut down, and will have to pay attorneys’ fees to several defendants.

“Empirically speaking, software patents lead to patent trolling, which is an activity mostly centered around Texas.”“US District Judge Rodney Gilstrap, who hears more patent cases that any other federal judge, issued an order (PDF) on Thursday saying that the behavior of eDekka LLC qualified as “exceptional,” and that the company should pay the legal fees of various companies it sued.

“Gilstrap’s courtroom is, arguably, the most surprising spot in the nation from which a patent troll slap-down might originate. The judge has been criticized by the Electronic Frontier Foundation for making life unnecessarily difficult for patent defendants. He’s also invalidated relatively few patents under Supreme Court precedent set in last year’s Alice Corp. case, even as other federal judges have been tossing out software patents at a steady clip.”

The legacy of Alice stands out again. Is Benoît Battistelli’s EPO taking note? Any note “as such”?
________
* Talks about patent reform are nowhere in sight anymore, definitely not in those must-pass bills — those which CISA gets lumped into at the 90th minute; see our daily links for more details about that scandalous act by Congress (Friday’s news).

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

What Else is New


  1. Links 22/7/2019: SUSE Gets CEO From SAP, MuQSS 0.193 Scheduler, VLC Bug

    Links for the day



  2. Links 22/7/2019: Linux 5.3 RC1, GNU Hyperbole 7.0.3, DebConf19

    Links for the day



  3. Don't Kick the Puppy That is Suing Linux Using Patents While Bribing Officials, Threatening Critics and Hijacking the Linux Foundation

    Jim Zemlin is protecting the "puppy" (to use his own analogy), Microsoft, while getting paid about/almost a million dollars per year (about the same amount of money Microsoft pays his PAC)



  4. EPO Gradually Becoming the World's Most Permissive (Low Patent Quality) Patent Office by Consciously Violating the EPC

    Today's European Patent Office is making innovation a lot harder for Europeans; it limits what people can freely do, e.g. what computer code they can implement, and only lawyers are loving it



  5. Tweets Are Not Journalism But Succinct Unverified Hearsay; Time to Treat Them Accordingly

    Childish public discourse can be attributed to SMS-sized nonsense posted in a hurry by career provocateurs, not grown-ups (becoming a waste of time for actual reporters who spend hours/days correcting the record after these go 'viral'); this is killing responsible journalism, necessitating a rethink



  6. The Web is Not JavaScript

    Simple sites respect visitors; rather than and instead of exploiting them or passing burdens to user-end browsers we should focus on text and links — the very core components of hypertext as opposed to bells and whistles



  7. Links 21/7/2019: DXVK 1.3.1, GameMode, Mutter 3.33.4

    Links for the day



  8. Links 20/7/2019: Weston 7.0 Alpha, Nageru 1.9.0

    Links for the day



  9. Companies That Collapse Because the European Patent Office (EPO) Gave Them Fake Patents in a Hurry

    False hopes and false promises won’t do any favours to European Patents, whose legal certainty suffers because Campinos and Battistelli measure nothing but ‘production’ (quantity) rather than quality of patents



  10. Slack Committed a Very Major Crime That Can Cost Many Billions If Not Trillions in Damages for Years to Come

    The inevitable has happened to Slack, which no longer deserves to exist as a company; moreover, the people who ran the company must be held criminally accountable



  11. Demand for European Patents Will Continue to Decrease If a Lot of European Patents Turn Out to be Invalid, Worthless

    The EPO's abandonment of patent justice and quality (in pursuit of so-called 'production' targets) is likely to doom the Office as the whole or render it vastly less relevant to the rest of the world



  12. 35 U.S.C. § 101 Still in Tact in the United States and Software Patents Rot Away

    The United States, where the number of granted patents decreased last year, becomes more productive; there are more signs that patent maximalism (patent litigation, patent scope etc.) has receded



  13. Links 19/7/2019: Deepin 15.11 and GNU/Linux Back on GPD MicroPC

    Links for the day



  14. Violence is Not Free Speech and Laws Exist Against Violence

    Free speech is certainly under attack and the debate is being framed within the context of Nazism; but this overlooks the fact that there are actual death threats and calls for genocide in the mix



  15. Links 19/7/2019: Oracle Linux 8.0, Latte Dock 0.9 Beta and PCLinuxOS KDE Darkstar 2019.07

    Links for the day



  16. Why Does Jim Zemlin Publicly Congratulate Microsoft?

    The signs aren't particularly encouraging when one considers that the leadership of the Linux Foundation is a fan of Microsoft and sometimes connected to Microsoft



  17. 2 Days Later (Case in Progress) and Still Media Silence About G 2/19

    The very legitimacy of years' worth of rulings and the EPO's abusive attacks on judges are under the microscope; but the media isn't paying any attention, perhaps deliberately



  18. The 'Linux' Foundation is Acting Like a Microsoft ISV Now, Commitment to Linux and FOSS Deteriorates Even Further

    The Linux Foundation has just announced a new Microsoft-funded initiative that's pushing GitHub and CLAs (passing copyrights on code to corporations)



  19. Links 18/7/2019: OPNsense 19.7, Krita 4.2.3 and KDevelop 5.3.3 Released

    Links for the day



  20. Index: G 2/19 (Enlarged Board of Appeal, EPO)

    G 2/19 (Enlarged Board of Appeal, EPO)



  21. EPO Looney Tunes – Part 4: G 2/19 - Faites Vos Jeux…

    "Josefsson needs to bring in the “desired result” for his political masters in the Administrative Council if he wants to be in with a chance of reappointment."



  22. Media Not Interested in G 2/19, Which Demonstrates Patent Justice is Nowadays Impossible at the EPO

    The EPO spreads patent injustices to other countries and courts; the media is miraculously enough not interested, almost as though there's a coordinated blackout



  23. Librethreat Database Updated

    Database which keeps track of variants of attack vectors on Free/libre software now includes two more forms of threat



  24. A Look Back (and Forward) at Friendly Programming

    Historical perspective on computer languages and how to do better



  25. Red Hat's Freedom Reduced to Just Online Partner Enablement Network (OPEN) and Microsoft as a Close Partner; Canonical's Ubuntu Just an 'App' for Windows?

    Free software is being snapped up by proprietary software giants and patent bullies that treat it as little more than an 'add-on' for their proprietary offerings



  26. Linux Foundation Apparently Celebrates Sysadmin Day With a Microsoft Windows Site!

    The Linux Foundation shows ‘love’ to actual GNU/Linux (the real thing) by apparently rejecting it and badmouthing it



  27. EPO Looney Tunes – Part 3: The Legal Line-up for G 2/19

    The deck appears to have already been stacked for G 2/19, a decision on EPO judges' exile to Haar (veiled disciplinary action/collective punishment by those whom the judges are supposed to 'oversee')



  28. Links 17/7/2019: VirtualBox 6.0.10 and Mageia 7.1 Releases, Mint Betas

    Links for the day



  29. Links 16/7/2019: Btrfs Gets 'Cleaned Up', Clonezilla Live 2.6.2-15

    Links for the day



  30. EPO Looney Tunes - Part 2: The “Difficult Legacy” and Its Dark Historical Shadow

    Assuming that he was informed, then it seems fair to say that Battistell’s little “joke” at the expense of the Boards was in very bad taste


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