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

09.30.18

Corporate Media Exploits Blockchain Hype to Promote Software Patents Painted as ‘Blockchains’

Posted in America, Deception, IBM, Patents at 2:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

As if distributed storage (the new “over the Internet”) makes everything novel and patent-worthy

Some distributed frames

Summary: The “blockchain” hype continues to be exploited by those looking to patent some software with storage or with databases, basically substituting that software component with the hype du jour

THE EPO and USPTO both mention blockchain patents, which are a form of software patents (and remember exclusion of software patents in Europe, Alice in the US, 35 U.S.C. § 101 and so on). Why are these silly patents being celebrated so much?

These patents are what we’ve come to refer to as ‘fake patents’, i.e. patents or applications that are just enough to fool the USPTO examiners into granting them (but not enough to fool courts). A few days ago an article titled “Top 7 Blockchain Patent Owners” was published, starting with: “Patents are tedious and complicated legal documents that protect crucial pieces of intellectual property. When something as revolutionary and widely applicable as blockchain comes along, everyone races to patent it. Today, some of the biggest financial services companies worldwide are working hard on blockchain patents. From Bank of America to Coinbase, these blockchain patent owners are changing—and controlling—the future of distributed ledger technology.”

This article with a copyright (“(C)”) image as the feature image is preceded by “America’s biggest corporations are building our blockchain future.”

It seems clear that the writer doesn’t know what patents are and how the system works.

In addition to this, over at Mondaq, Robert M. Meeks (Ward and Smith, P.A.) used these dirty tactics of calling everything by buzzwords, even “Blockchain Revolution” (like 4IR). Such patent lawyers/law firms tacitly admit that they know software patents are bunk and are therefore trying to call these “blockchain”. This latest effort:

The Blockchain Revolution: Time To Ramp Up Your Software Patenting Effort?

As you read this article, hundreds of startups and other organizations are working on blockchain applications in such areas as energy trading, data storage trading, peer-to-peer lending, and verifying professional or other credentials.

A lot of these organizations, including tech giants and large financial institutions, are seeking patents on these applications, a rush reminiscent of the one that occurred in the 1990′s and 2000′s with the advent of the World Wide Web and e-commerce. What are the current prospects for this new wave of blockchain-related patent applications?

These would be rendered invalid en masse one day, by means of extrapolation from precedent/s. Wait and watch.

IBM has meanwhile moved on from toys/drones as PR for its patents; this patent-bullying conglomerate is still misusing the “blockchain” hype to patent software and “IBM Patent Eyes Blockchain for Drone Fleet Security,” a headline said last week. To quote:

Computing giant and prolific blockchain researcher IBM has applied to patent a system that would use distributed ledger technology (DLT) to address privacy and security concerns associated with the increasing usage of drones in both commercial and recreational applications.

According to documents made public on Thursday by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), IBM first applied for the patent, the latest in its growing library of prospective blockchain applications, in March 2017.

“These patents are what we’ve come to refer to as ‘fake patents’, i.e. patents or applications that are just enough to fool the USPTO examiners into granting them (but not enough to fool courts).”These patents are obsolete. Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes reviews (IPRs), sometimes affirmed by the Federal Circuit, have already trashed a lot of abstract IBM patents. Surely IBM knows that all these patents that it’s amassing might impress examiners (who were previously bossed by IBM’s David Kappos), but courts would not be impressed.

Why do these examiners still grant such patents?

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. Patents on Abstract Things and on Life (or Patents Which Threaten Lives) Merely Threaten the Very Legitimacy of Patent Offices, Including EPO

    Patent Hubris and maximalism pose a threat or a major risk to the very system that they claim to be championing; by reducing the barrier to entry (i.e. introducing low-quality or socially detrimental patents) they merely embolden ardent critics who demand patent systems as a whole be abolished; the EPO is nowadays a leading example of it



  2. Links 10/12/2018: Linux 4.20 RC6 and Git 2.20

    Links for the day



  3. US Courts Make the United States' Patent System Sane Again

    35 U.S.C. § 101 (Section 101), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and other factors are making the patent system in the US a lot more sane



  4. Today's USPTO Grants a Lot of Fake Patents, Software Patents That Courts Would Invalidate

    The 35 U.S.C. § 101 effect is very much real; patents on abstract/nonphysical ideas get invalidated en masse (in courts/PTAB) and Director Andrei Iancu refuses to pay attention as if he's above the law and court rulings don't apply to him



  5. A Month After Microsoft Claimed Patent 'Truce' Its Patent Trolls Keep Attacking Microsoft's Rivals

    Microsoft's legal department relies on its vultures (to whom it passes money and patents) to sue its rivals; but other than that, Microsoft is a wonderful company!



  6. Good News: US Supreme Court Rejects Efforts to Revisit Alice, Most Software Patents to Remain Worthless

    35 U.S.C. § 101 will likely remain in tact for a long time to come; courts have come to grips with the status quo, as even the Federal Circuit approves the large majority of invalidations by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) panels, initiated by inter partes reviews (IPRs)



  7. Florian Müller's Article About SEPs and the EPO

    Report from the court in Munich, where the EPO is based



  8. EPO Vice-President Željko Topić in New Article About Corruption in Croatia

    The Croatian newspaper 7Dnevno has an outline of what Željko Topić has done in Croatia and in the EPO in Munich; it argues that this seriously erodes Croatia's national brand/identity



  9. The Quality of European Patents Continues to Deteriorate Under António Campinos and Software Patents Are Advocated Every Day

    The EPC in the European Patent Office and 35 U.S.C. § 101 in the USPTO annul most if not all software patents; under António Campinos, however, software patents are being granted in Europe and the USPTO exploits similar tricks



  10. Team UPC is Still Spreading False Rumours in an Effort to Trick Politicians and Pressure Judges

    Abuses at the European Patent Office, political turmoil and an obvious legislative coup by a self-serving occupation that produces nothing have already doomed the Unitary Patent or Unified Patent Court (UPC); so now we deal with complete fabrications from Team UPC as they're struggling to make something out of nothing, anonymously smearing opposition to the UPC and anonymously making stuff up



  11. Patents on Life and Patents That Kill the Poor Would Only Delegitimise the European Patent Office

    After Mayo, Myriad and other SCOTUS cases (the basis of 35 U.S.C. § 101) the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is reluctant to grant patents on life; the European Patent Office (EPO), however, goes in the opposite direction, even in defiance of the European Patent Convention



  12. EPO 'Untapped Potential'

    "Campinos is diligently looking for ways to further increase the Office’s output without increasing the number of examiners," says the EPO-FLIER team



  13. Links 9/12/2018: New Linux Stable Releases (Notably Linux 4.19.8), RC Coming, and Unifont 11.0.03

    Links for the day



  14. Links 8/12/2018: Mesa 18.3.0, Mageia 7 Beta, WordPress 5.0

    Links for the day



  15. The European Patent Organisation is Like a Private Club and Roland Grossenbacher is Back in It

    In the absence of Benoît Battistelli quality control at the EPO is still not effective; patents are being granted like the sole goal is to increase so-called 'production' (or profit), appeals are being subjected to threats from Office management, and external courts (courts that assess patents outside the jurisdiction of the Office/Organisation) are being targeted with a long-sought replacement like the Unified Patent Court, or UPC (Unitary Patent)



  16. Links 7/12/2018: GNU Guix, GuixSD 0.16.0, GCC 7.4, PHP 7.3.0 Released

    Links for the day



  17. The Federal Circuit's Decision on Ancora Technologies v HTC America is the Rare Exception, Not the Norm

    Even though the PTAB does not automatically reject every patent when 35 U.S.C. § 101 gets invoked we're supposed to think that somehow things are changing in favour of patent maximalists; but all they do is obsess over something old (as old as a month ago) and hardly controversial



  18. The European Patent Office Remains a Lawless Place Where Judges Are Afraid of the Banker in Chief

    With the former banker Campinos replacing the politician Battistelli and seeking to have far more powers it would be insane for the German Constitutional Court to ever allow anything remotely like the UPC; sites that are sponsored by Team UPC, however, try to influence outcomes, pushing patent maximalism and diminishing the role of patent judges



  19. Many of the Same People Are Still in Charge of the European Patent Office Even Though They Broke the Law

    "EPO’s art collection honoured with award," the EPO writes, choosing to distract from what actually goes on at the Office and has never been properly dealt with



  20. Links 6/12/2018: FreeNAS 11.2, Mesa 18.3 Later Today, Fedora Elections

    Links for the day



  21. EPO, in Its Patent Trolls-Infested Forum, Admits It is Granting Bogus Software Patents Under the Guise of 'Blockchain'

    Yesterday's embarrassing event of the EPO was a festival of the litigation giants and trolls, who shrewdly disguise patents on algorithms using all sorts of fashionable words that often don't mean anything (or deviate greatly from their original meanings)



  22. The Patent Litigation Bubble is Imploding in the US While the UPC Dies in Europe

    The meta-industry which profits from feuds, disputes, threats and blackmail isn't doing too well; even in Europe, where it worked hard for a number of years to institute a horrible litigation system which favours global plaintiffs (patent trolls, opportunists and monopolists), these things are going up in flames



  23. Links 5/12/2018: Epic Games Store, CrossOver 18.1.0, Important Kubernetes Patch

    Links for the day



  24. Links 4/12/2018: LibrePCB 0.1.0, SQLite 3.26.0, PhysX Code

    Links for the day



  25. EPO Management Keeps Embarrassing Itself, UPC More Dead Than Before, and Nokia Turns Aggressive

    The EPO’s race to the bottom of patent quality continues, it’s now complemented by direct association with patent trolls and law stands in their way (for they repeatedly violate the law)



  26. The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) and IBM Are Part of the Software Patents Problem in the United States

    IBM's special role in lobbying for software patents (and against PTAB) needs to be highlighted; even Ethereum’s co-founder isn't happy about IBM's meddling in the blockchain space (with help from Hyperledger/Linux Foundation)



  27. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Not Falling for Attempts to Prevent It From Instituting Challenges

    In the face of patent maximalists' endless efforts to derail patent quality the tribunal keeps calm and carries on smashing bad patents



  28. Links 2/12/2018: Linux 4.20 RC5, Snapcraft 3.0, VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  29. The Patent Microcosm Hopes That the Federal Circuit Will Get 'Tired' of Rejecting Software Patents

    Trolls-friendly sites aren't tolerating this court's habit of saying "no" to software patents; the Chief Judge meanwhile acknowledges that they're being overrun by a growing number of cases/appeals



  30. 35 U.S.C. § 101 Continues to Crush Software Patents and Even Microsoft Joins 'the Fun'

    The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) and even courts below it continue to throw out software patents or send them back to PTAB and lower courts; there is virtually nothing for patent maximalists to celebrate any longer


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