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

03.30.17

Oral Arguments in the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Suggest That the TC Heartland Case Will Likely Crush the Eastern District of Texas, Presently Infested With Patent Trolls

Posted in America, Courtroom, Patents at 10:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Judge Gilstrap alone may have already caused billions of dollars in damages to legitimate (practicing) companies

Rodney Gilstrap

Summary: Courts of the Eastern District of Texas (EDTX or East Texas for short) might soon have to fold or resize, and the local economy adapt to accommodate something other than patent trolls and aggressors, based on words (questions) heard at the highest courtroom in the United States

MANY eyes are on SCOTUS this week, for it can seriously influence the USPTO as much as it influences the courts. Are patent trolls going to receive one final death blow (not entirely mortal, but enough to weed out most of them)? Two cases currently deal with it, one covered in IAM (with the expected bias, being IAM) and another by MIP yesterday. Behind a paywall, as usual, clues are given that the future of patent trolls in the US seems anything but promising. They might soon be more or less defanged, as their historical preference for East Texas can belatedly come to an end. Natalie Rahhal wrote about “[q]uestions from some Supreme Court justices in oral arguments in TC Heartland v Kraft,” saying that these “suggested a desire to overturn the Federal Circuit on patent venue.”

As a crucial reminder, the Federal Circuit ruled in TC Heartland that it’s fine for trolls to carry on and last month Professor Dennis Crouch said that “TC Heartland doesn’t seem like a case the Supreme Court would hear simply to affirm” but rather to overturn. There is no level higher than SCOTUS, so if SCOTUS says no to East Texas, then it’s a big no. The corporate media obsesses over the effect on local businesses, rather than the effect on victimised companies which get dragged into Texan courts that are a sham. Employees lose their jobs over such lawsuits. Entire companies can collapse. The other day we shared the following video:

“Are patent trolls going to receive one final death blow (not entirely mortal, but enough to weed out most of them)?”Yesterday we wrote about LG resorting to the use of patent trolls for legal leverage — a truly despicable tactic conveniently overlooked by the English-speaking Korean media.

Elsevier, in the mean time, has published this new article titled “Standing Up to the Patent Troll, the Big Bad Wolf of the Patent World” and it’s not too flattering to trolls. To quote a part which advocates the America Invents Act:

Regardless of how you define the term “patent troll,” most people agree that such entities are bad news for our economy because they cost consumers and retailers billions of dollars each year. The patent troll is, for lack of a better analogy, the big bad wolf of the patent world, huffing and puffing by suing legitimate businesses for patent infringement. The question that remains is what can be done about them? More specifically, must one succumb to litigating a patent infringement lawsuit in federal court in order to defeat a patent troll? The short answer is, not always. Recently Congress, through its passage of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“AIA”), provided alleged patent infringers with several tools to invalidate patents outside of U.S. district court litigation. Indeed, in many instances alleged patent infringers can challenge patents in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“U.S. PTO”) using proceedings known as “post-grant proceedings.” Among other advantages, post-grant proceedings are typically less expensive and faster than district court litigation. And if the U.S. PTO invalidates one or more claims of a patent before a district court reaches its decision in a patent troll’s infringement litigation, the patent troll’s district court litigation is likely to end. While there is still much work to be done to solve the problem of patent trolls, Congress’ implementation of post-grant proceedings has restored some of the balance of power between patent trolls and those they allege infringe their patents.

The America Invents Act (AIA) has done so much to improve the US patent system and even invalidate a lot of software patents, thanks in part to Alice (SCOTUS). Patent maximalists are still licking their wounds over it and one of them asks questions like, “How Technical Must an Improvement be to Survive 101?” (via this proponent of software patents)

“Now we just need to stride forward or strive for the end of East Texas as the hotbed of patent trolls and then put an end to trolls once and for all.”That’s the wrong question to ask. 101 is about “abstract” or not, not “technical” (whatever that means) or not; perhaps the writer conflates that with something of the EPO. Either way, the writer says “[t]he technical nature of a claimed improvement is central to the evaluation of claims under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Two recent district court opinions illustrate that whether or not the claims describe an improvement in the functioning of a computer itself can be determinative.”

Well, district court opinions barely bear any weight compared to anything from CAFC and SCOTUS, which are both hostile towards software patents in general. Now we just need to stride forward or strive for the end of East Texas as the hotbed of patent trolls and then put an end to trolls once and for all. They are in no way promoting innovation; they suppress innovation. Many of them are being used as proxies of large corporations such as Microsoft in order to taunt and cause damage to their rivals. LG is just one example that we named earlier this week.

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. Stuffed/Stacked Panels Sent Back Packing After One-Sided Patent Hearings That Will Convince Nobody, Just Preach to the Choir

    Almost a week ago the 'world tour' of patent lobbyists in US Senate finally ended; it was an utterly ridiculous case study in panel stacking and bribery (attempts to buy laws)



  2. 2019 H1: American Software Patents Are as Worthless as They Were Last Year and Still Susceptible to Invalidation

    With a fortnight left before the second half of the year it seems evident that software patents aren't coming back; the courts have not changed their position at all



  3. As European Patent Office Management Covers up Collapse in Patent Quality Don't Expect UPC to Ever Kick Off

    It would be madness to allow EPO-granted patents to become 'unitary' (bypassing sovereignty of nations that actually still value patent quality); it seems clear that rogue EPO management has, in effect, not only doomed UPC ambitions but also European Patents (or their perceived legitimacy, presumption of validity)



  4. António Campinos -- Unlike His Father -- Engages in Imperialism (Using Invalid Patents)

    Despite some similarities to his father (not positive similarities), António Campinos is actively engaged in imperialistic agenda that defies even European law; the EPO not only illegally grants patents but also urges other patent offices to do the same



  5. António Campinos Takes EPO Waste and Corruption to Unprecedented Levels and Scale

    The “B” word (billions) is thrown around at Europe’s second-largest institution because a mischievous former EUIPO chief (not Archambeau) is ‘partying’ with about half of the EPO’s all-time savings, which are supposed to be reserved for pensions and other vital programmes, not presidential palaces and gambling



  6. Links 15/6/2019: Astra Linux in Russia, FreeBSD 11.3 RC

    Links for the day



  7. Code of Conduct Explained: Partial Transcript - August 10th, 2018 - Episode 80, The Truth About Southeast Linuxfest

    "Ask Noah" and the debate on how a 'Code of Conduct' is forcibly imposed on events



  8. Links 14/6/2019: Xfce-Related Releases, PHP 7.4.0 Alpha

    Links for the day



  9. The EPO is a Patent Troll's Wet Dream

    The makers of software and games in Europe will have to spend a lot of money just keeping patent trolls off their backs — a fact that seems to never bother EPO management because it profits from it



  10. EPO Spreading Patent Extremists' Ideology to the Whole World, Now to South Korea

    The EPO’s footprint around the world's patent systems is an exceptionally dangerous one; The EPO amplifies the most zealous voices of the patents and litigation ‘industry’ while totally ignoring the views and interests of the European public, rendering the EPO an ‘agent of corporate occupation’



  11. Guest Post: Notes on Free Speech, and a Line in the Sand

    We received this anonymous letter and have published it as a follow-up to "Reader's Claim That Rules Similar to the Code of Conduct (CoC) Were 'Imposed' on LibrePlanet and the FSF"



  12. Links 13/6/2019: CERN Dumps Microsoft, GIMP 2.10.12 Released

    Links for the day



  13. Links 12/6/2019: Mesa 19.1.0, KDE neon 5.16, Endless OS 3.6.0 and BackBox Linux 6

    Links for the day



  14. Leaked Financial 'Study' Document Shows EPO Management and Mercer Engaging in an Elaborate “Hoax”

    How the European Patent Office (EPO) lies to its own staff to harm that staff; thankfully, the staff isn't easily fooled and this whole affair will merely obliterate any remnants of "benefit of the doubt" the President thus far enjoyed



  15. Measuring Patent Quality and Employer Quality in Europe

    Comparing the once-famous and respected EPO to today's joke of an office, which grants loads of bogus patents on just about anything including fruit and mathematics



  16. Granting More Fundamentally Wrong Patents Will Mean Reduced Certainty, Not Increased Certainty

    Law firms that are accustomed to making money from low-quality and abstract patents try to overcome barriers by bribing politicians; this will backfire because they show sheer disregard for the patent system's integrity and merely lower the legal certainty associated with granted (by greedy offices) patents



  17. Links 11/6/2019: Wine 4.10, Plasma 5.16

    Links for the day



  18. Chapter 10: Moving Forward -- Getting the Best Results From Open Source With Your Monopoly

    “the gradual shift in public consciousness from their branding towards our own, is the next best thing to owning them outright.”



  19. Chapter 9: Ownership Through Branding -- Change the Names, and Change the World

    The goal for those fighting against Open source, against the true openness (let's call it the yet unexploited opportunities) of Open source, has to be first to figuratively own the Linux brand, then literally own or destroy the brand, then to move the public awareness of the Linux brand to something like Azure, or whatever IBM is going to do with Red Hat.



  20. Links 10/6/2019: VLC 3.0.7, KDE Future Plans

    Links for the day



  21. Patent Quality Continues to Slip in Europe and We Know Who Will Profit From That (and Distract From It)

    The corporate media and large companies don't speak about it (like Red Hat did before entering a relationship with IBM), but Europe is being littered and saturated with a lot of bogus software patents -- abstract patents that European courts would almost certainly throw out; this utter failure of the media to do journalism gets exploited by the "big litigation" lobby and EPO management that's granting loads of invalid European Patents (whose invalidation goes underreported or unreported in the media)



  22. Corporate Front Groups Like OIN and the Linux Foundation Need to Combat Software Patents If They Really Care About Linux

    The absurdity of having groups that claim to defend Linux but in practice defend software patents, if not actively then passively (by refusing to comment on this matter)



  23. Links 9/6/2019: Arrest of Microsoft Peter, Linux 5.2 RC4, Ubuntu Touch Update

    Links for the day



  24. Chapter 8: A Foot in the Door -- How to Train Sympathetic Developers and Infiltrate Other Projects

    How to train sympathetic developers and infiltrate other projects



  25. Chapter 7: Patent War -- Use Low-Quality Patents to Prove That All Software Rips Off Your Company

    Patents in the United States last for 20 years from the time of filing. Prior to 1994, the patent term was 17 years from when the patent was issued.



  26. The Linux Foundation in 2019: Over 100 Million Dollars in Income, But Cannot Maintain Linux.com?

    Today’s Linux Foundation gets about 0.1 billion dollars per year (as explained in our previous post), so why can’t it spend about 0.1% of that money on people who write for and maintain a site that actually promotes GNU/Linux?



  27. Microsoft and Proprietary Software Vendors a Financial Boon for the Linux Foundation, But at What Cost?

    The Linux Foundation is thriving financially, but the sources of income are diversified to the point where the Linux Foundation is actually funded by foes of Linux, defeating the very purpose or direction of such a nonprofit foundation (led by self-serving millionaires who don't use GNU/Linux)



  28. The Linux Foundation as a Facilitator of Microsoft's Abduction of Developers (for GitHub, Azure, Visual Studio and Windows)

    There’s a profoundly disturbing pattern; in a rush for influence and money the Linux Foundation inadvertently (or worse — consciously and deliberately) paved the way to Microsoft’s more modern version of Embrace, Extend, Extinguish (EEE)



  29. Links 8/6/2019: FreeBSD 11.3 Beta 3, Git 2.22.0 and IPFire 2.23

    Links for the day



  30. Microsoft Peter is a Pedophile, Arrested Without Bail

    "Microsoft Peter" turns out to be a very sick man, much like people who apply for a job at Microsoft, knowing the company's dirty dealings and crimes


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