01.29.17

The Future of Patent Trolls in the US Will Also Determine Europe’s

Posted in America, Europe, Patents at 7:34 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Sisvel

Summary: A quick update about patent trolls and what the latest developments may mean to their operations in the United States and Europe

THE UPC threatened to bring yet more patent trolls to Europe (patent professionals admit this), but thankfully the UPC is not happening, albeit few patent trolls thrive in Europe even without it (here is an example from London in 2015).

Patent aggressors and trolls have come a long way in the US. Last year we wrote about yet more of those infamous patent raids in US-based expos. These “bans” would serve only to discourage participation, wouldn’t they? These turned out to have been frivolous and actual items got confiscated with little or no (minimal) legal basis. Is the same kind of thing coming to Europe as well? Sisvel already operates in Europe and this Sunday column from IAM’s editor says we “can also expect all kinds of entity – operating and non-operating – to be keeping a close look-out for potential IP infringements. With this in mind, the Barcelona courts have developed a fast-track protocol that, in some circumstances, enables rights owners to obtain preliminary injunctions preventing the exhibit of allegedly infringing items.”

Are they seriously trying to rush something that would typically take days if not weeks/months to properly assess? Is this a notorious case of “shoot first, ask questions later”?

As in the case of Sisvel, these practices are extremely controversial. Sisvel is not a company, it’s a kind of Mafia. They work not for companies but for aggressors; they’re trolls, they’re shells. They’re just a front for other people or large corporations. There is this new article in the news which speaks of patent trolls as follows:

Many companies still benefit from patents—including the whole industry of “non-practicing entities” (NPEs, sometimes called “patent trolls”). NPEs are companies that attempt to enforce patent rights against accused infringers far beyond the patent’s actual value or contribution to the prior art. Normally, NPEs do not actually manufacture products or supply services based upon the patents they attempt to enforce. This has caused such a problem that even the U.S. government has complained: “An analysis of recent research…suggests that a substantial amount of patent litigation in the United States, often with little substantive merit, often arises from certain types of NPEs.”

So even those working for traditional intellectual-property-loving corporations are told not to look at the patent literature when innovating, as it could weaken their legal arguments in anticipated lawsuits. This essentially handcuffs innovators to searching for 20-year-old (or older) patents if they even look at the patent database at all. To search for patents that have expired, you can simply set a T-20 year period at the USPTO search or Google Patents.

Will Michelle Lee carry on with reforms that tackle patent trolling? Will the US Supreme Court finally put an end to the trolls’ capital, where capital punishment still exists? If Donald Trump capitulates and surrenders to the patent maximalists (for example if he appoints people like Rader to top positions), then it’s going to be yet another negative sign for US-based software companies. According to today’s non-update from Patently-O, it is still not known for sure whether Lee can carry on with the good progress she has made. To quote: “Apart from the two positions that require Senate confirmation (Secretary and Deputy), the only top commerce department position not filled by either an acting chief or appointee is Undersecretary of Intellectual Property and USPTO Director.”

If Lee squashes all software patents and trolls, they are unlikely to ever spread to Europe, maybe only to China (their new breeding ground).

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

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. Twitter is Hiding Techrights and Partly Shadowbans Yours Truly

    Based on many systematic (and reproducible) tests, Twitter has taken up yet another notch its covert censorship regime, which optimises — based on some vague criteria — what people can see and cannot see



  2. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 27, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 27, 2021



  3. Links 28/1/2021: Stable Kernels and Sudo Bugfixes

    Links for the day



  4. Showing Solidarity With FSFE Survivors

    What does justice look like?



  5. IBM is Throwing Away Red Hat's 'de Facto Standard' Status in Servers, Wrongly Assuming People Can't (or Won't) Go Elsewhere

    This new video is over half an hour long and it’s a discussion of IBM’s self-harming (shot-in-the-foot) move, which it already seems to regret



  6. Why 6 Screens and 6 Virtual Desktops

    An explanation of how I use computers and how I distribute tasks (across screens and across virtual desktops)



  7. Red Hat Developer Network Promoting Microsoft's Proprietary Software, Sometimes by Mass-Mailing People

    Red Hat is doing a disservice to people who subscribe to E-mail newsletters; those people are almost never into Microsoft's proprietary software, which they want to get away from



  8. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 26, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 26, 2021



  9. Links 26/1/2021: Mozilla Firefox 85.0, Tails 4.15, Zentyal Server 7.0, GNOME 40 Alpha

    Links for the day



  10. Instead of Making Access to COVID-19 Solutions Easier Bill Gates Has Made It Harder (Patent Profits)

    Counterproductively — and at a great cost to human civilisation — Bill Gates has once again put profits and monopoly ahead of global goals such as collective health



  11. We Need More Documents Leaked to Know Intel (From the) Inside

    We invite more leaks from the belly of the beast "chipzilla", seeing that it is becoming a drone of Microsoft again, yearning for the "Wintel" days instead of moving on to a world dominated by GNU/Linux and Free/libre software



  12. Why GNU/Linux Users (and the Public at Large) Should Support Leaking/Whistleblowing Sites (Including Wikileaks)

    To demonstrate the value of "scientific journalism" (a term apparently coined by Wikileaks) we take a look at Red Hat's response to embarrassing leaks (demonstrating what a scam their certification and examination programmes really are)



  13. EPO President António Campinos is Still Not Listening, According to Internal EPO Documents

    Increasingly arrogant and unaccountable management of Europe's second-largest institution (EPO) has left staff disillusioned but still defiant; there's clearly unsuitable or unfit-for-purpose management at the EPO, self-selecting based on nepotism/loyalty so as to cover up abuses



  14. Why You Should Give Falkon (the Web Browser) a Chance on GNU/Linux, BSD, or Windows

    In this crazy new world where advertisers are the real customers and Web users ("audiences") have been reduced to mere products we need a browser that isn't controlled by a company; try Falkon



  15. Kluwer Patent Spin and Distortion of Facts (Regarding UPC and More)

    Kluwer Patent Blog disgraces the firm that puts its name on it; instead of sticking to facts they're distorting the facts and the sole/principal goal is to manipulate/mislead the public and public servants



  16. Links 26/1/2021: 4MLinux 35.1, GParted 1.2, Gnuastro 0.14

    Links for the day



  17. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, January 25, 2021



  18. It's Wrong to Assume Red Hat Competes With Microsoft

    The community ought to stop pretending that one monopoly seeks to replace another despite close partnerships (some would say "collusion") between the two



  19. EPO Staff Representation Complains That EPO Management Exploits Pandemic and 'House Arrests' to Overwork Staff, Lower Quality

    The EPO keeps breaking its promises to workers; not only are key employees seeing their net salary cut (inflation factored in) but pensioners too are being robbed and in the meantime the total time spent on work is increasing



  20. Fake News is Not a 'Wing' Thing

    The two-party corporate-led system (and media) would have us obsess/bicker about accuracy of news based on some binary/dual system of blind loyalty rather than underlying facts and priorities



  21. Links 25/1/2021: Huawei on GNU/Linux, NuTyX 20.12.1, Whisker Menu 2.5.3, Lutris 0.5.8.3, Linux 5.11 RC5

    Links for the day



  22. Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt (FUD) in ZDNet is the Norm

    ZDNet continues to emit lots of garbage 'journalism', in effect Microsoft PR and what's known as "black PR" for Linux; just like Bleeping Computer, which ZDNet hired this writer from, there's no adherence to facts, just smears and innuendo



  23. Truth Tellers Aren't an Enemy of Free Software

    There's a perpetual attack on people who speak out against actors and corporations in positions of great power, however subtle and indirect those attacks may seem on the surface (they don't wish to be held accountable for defaming activists)



  24. The Linux Foundation, With Over 124 Million Dollars in Annual Revenue, is in Trouble Because of the Pandemic, So It's Trying to Reinvent Itself as Training and Certifications Outfit

    With mountains of cash and a Public Relations (PR) or marketing business model the so-called 'Linux' Foundation became reliant on travel, lodging, booths and speeches on sale; COVID-19 is a great risk to that business model



  25. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 24, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 24, 2021



  26. Our Move Further Away From the World Wide Web, the Browser Monopolies, HTTP, and HTML

    The World Wide Web (WWW) is going down a bad path and a clearly regressive direction; the solution isn't going 'retro' but exploring more sophisticated systems which are robust to censorship (localised or globalised) and downtime (related to censorship) while reducing surveillance by leveraging encryption at the endpoints



  27. Important Issues Not Entertained in the Community, Especially Critics of the Status Quo

    here's corporate infiltration inside communities (for oligarchy hunts volunteer, unpaid labour) and those who speak about that as a threat to our cause and objectives are painted as misguided outcasts who must be ignored



  28. Internet Origins of the Mob

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock



  29. When Proprietary Software Users Dictate the Freedom-Leaning Communities

    Fedora doesn't care about software freedom and its steward (or parent company) is sometimes imposing proprietary software on staff; they've quit caring



  30. In 2020 Onwards 'Open Source' is Just a Marketing Ploy of Monopolies, Unlike Free Software

    More people are nowadays seeing or witnessing 'Open Source' for what it truly is; the term has become a misleading marketing term of proprietary software firms looking to rebrand as "ethical" (e.g. by sharing some code with other proprietary software firms, over proprietary platforms such as GitHub)


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