01.06.19

Gemini version available ♊︎

Unified Patents Goes After Patent Trolls Funded and Armed (Given Patents) by Microsoft

Posted in Microsoft, Patents at 4:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft and trolls

Summary: Opposition to dubious patents (typically on software) comes from a firm that crowd-funds the process; it’s curious to see several of Microsoft’s trolls being challenged

A COUPLE of days ago we wrote about patent trolls that Unified Patents had tackled just before the year’s end. Another proxy (among many) of the patent troll Bradley Liddle was mentioned 3 days ago and then we learned more about Uniloc, which is just a litigation pipeline that ought not exist. We might take a closer look at it some time in the near future because readers sent us relevant information.

Unified Patents wrote that on the final day of the year, “December 31, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 7,020,252 owned by well-known NPE Uniloc 2017 LLC. The ‘252 patent, directed to group voice messaging, has been asserted against Hike, Microsoft and Apple.”

Microsoft has already paid this troll a lot of money; apparently not enough to keep it away. But make no mistake; Microsoft isn’t the victim because Microsoft actively contributes to this problem. Microsoft spent a tremendous amount of time and money promoting software patents and now there’s this big mess. Unified Patents has just tackled this patent on “verifying electronic forms” (obviously abstract) and even if courts would reject such patents, their very existence is a major nuisance as they can be leveraged for extortion. It’s widely known by now (even IAM admitted it a few days) that patent litigation has collapsed, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the extortion is winding down (it’s impossible to reliably measure/quantify). “2018 US patent cases down 41% from 2015,” patent maximalists noted some days ago, but what about the extortion?

The decrease in district court patent cases was proportionally smaller last year than the year before, suggesting the volume of new patent disputes is levelling out

They’re just looking for some positive spin to make this decline sound like good news for patent maximalists. Here comes another troll, whose sole apparent ‘business’ will be challenged by an inter partes review (IPR) at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB):

On December 28, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 6,411,871 owned by American GNC Corporation (an NPE). The ‘871 patent, directed to vehicle sensors, has never been asserted.

Maybe not in court. Extortion is still a possibility.

New IPRs that we find more interesting, however, were published no sooner than Friday. Intellectual Ventures, Microsoft’s main patent troll (which is arming proxies and shells that sue everyone), is also targeting automobile companies:

On December 31, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 7,925,416 owned and asserted by Carrum Technologies, LLC after it was transferred from an Intellectual Ventures subsidiary. The ‘416 patent, directed to vehicle sensors, was asserted in October against BMW, FCA, and Ford.

A Microsoft patent troll-armed (by Intellectual Ventures) patent troll rears its ugly head again. It’s this troll that nowadays uses shells that sue everyone and an IPR against it was also noted on Friday:

On December 31, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 7,376,645 asserted by Portal Communications LLC (owned by well-known NPE Dominion Harbor). The ‘645 patent, directed to natural language processing techniques, has been asserted against SoundHound, Microsoft, and Apple.

Again it’s curious to see Microsoft among those targeted because Microsoft’s own patent troll gave patents to Dominion Harbor. Has Microsoft lost control of the mess it created? Either way, this mess helps sell “Azure IP Advantage” [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18].

There’s one more newly-advertised IPR. “On December 31,” Robert Jain wrote “Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 9,324,365 owned by Hertl Media LLC. The ‘365 patent, directed to techniques for buffering multiple audio tracks of a video, has been asserted against several companies with streaming media services such as Cox, Netflix, and Amazon.”

A lot of the above are abstract patents, but Unified Patents often leverages prior art to squash such patents. Considering the very high success rates of IPRs, one might assume that few (if any) of the above patents will endure PTAB’s scrutiny.

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

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Microsoft DuckDuckGo Falls to Lowest Share in 2 Years After Being Widely Exposed as Microsoft Proxy, Fake 'Privacy'

    DuckDuckGo, according to this latest data from Statcounter, fell from about 0.71% to just 0.58%; all the gains have been lost amid scandals, such as widespread realisation that DuckDuckGo is a Microsoft informant, curated by Microsoft and hosted by Microsoft (Bing is meanwhile laying off many people, but the media isn’t covering that or barely bothers)



  2. This is What the Microsoft-Sponsored Media Has Been Hyping Up for Weeks (Ahead of Microsoft Layoffs)

    Reprinted with permission from Ryan



  3. [Meme] António Campinos Wants to Be F***ing President Until 2028

    António Campinos insists he will be EPO President for 10 years, i.e. even longer than Benoît Battistelli (despite having appalling approval rates from staff)



  4. European Patent Office Staff Losing Hope

    The EPO’s management with its shallow campaign of obfuscation (pretending to protect children or some other nonsense) is not fooling patent examiners, who have grown tired and whose representatives say “the administration shows no intention of involving the staff representation in the drafting of the consultant’s mandate” (like in Sirius ‘Open Source’ where technical staff is ignored completely for misguided proposals to pass in the dark)



  5. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 26, 2023

    IRC logs for Thursday, January 26, 2023



  6. Sirius Relegated/Demoted/Destined Itself to Technical Hell by Refusing to Listen to the Technical Staff (Which Wanted to Stay With Asterisk/Free Software)

    In my final year at Sirius ‘Open Source’ communication systems had already become chaotic; there were too many dysfunctional tools, a lack of instructions, a lack of coordination and the proposed ‘solution’ (this past October) was just more complexity and red tape



  7. Geminispace Approaching Another Growth Milestone (2,300 Active Capsules)

    The expansion of Geminispace is worth noting again because another milestone is approached, flirted with, or will be surpassed this coming weekend



  8. [Meme] Cannot Get a Phone to Work... in 2022

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ wasted hours of workers’ time just testing the phone after it had moved to a defective system of Google (proprietary); instead of a rollback (back to Asterisk) the company doubled down on the faulty system and the phones still didn’t work properly, resulting in missing calls and angst (the company just blamed the workers who all along rejected this new system)



  9. [Meme] Modern Phones

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ is mistaking “modern” for better; insecurity and a lack of tech savvy typically leads to that



  10. The ISO Delusion: Sirius Corporation Demonstrates a Lack of Understanding of Security and Privacy

    Sirius ‘Open Source’, emboldened by ISO ‘paperwork’ (certification), lost sight of what it truly takes to run a business securely, mistaking worthless gadgets for “advancement” while compelling staff to sign a new contract in a hurry (prior contract-signing scandals notwithstanding)



  11. Links 26/01/2023: LibreOffice 7.4.5 and Ubuntu Pro Offers

    Links for the day



  12. Links 26/01/2023: GNU poke 3.0 and PipeWire 0.3.65

    Links for the day



  13. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 25, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 25, 2023



  14. Companies Would Collapse Upon Abandoning Their Original Goals (That Attracted All the Productive Staff)

    Staff with technical skills won't stick around in companies that reject technical arguments and moreover move to proprietary software in a company that brands itself "Open Source"



  15. [Meme] Listen to Your Workers, Avert Disaster

    Companies that refuse to take input from staff are doomed to fail



  16. The ISO Delusion: When the Employer Doesn’t Understand the Company's Value Proposition (Building Systems) and Rejects Security

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ has failed to sell what it was actually good at; instead it hired unqualified people and outsourced almost everything



  17. Links 25/01/2023: NuTyX 23.01.1 and GNU Guile 3.0.9 Released

    Links for the day



  18. Links 25/01/2023: Stratis 3.5.0 and Many Political Links

    Links for the day



  19. New Record Low: Only One 'Linux' Article in ZDNet in More Than Two Weeks

    Only a few years ago ZDNet published about 3 “Linux” stories per day (mostly FUD pieces); now it’s a ghost town, painted in ‘alien green’; considering ZDNet’s agenda (and sponsors) maybe it’s better this way



  20. Links 25/01/2023: Pale Moon 32.0 and DXVK 2.1

    Links for the day



  21. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 24, 2023

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 24, 2023



  22. ISO Certification Hardly Tackles Any of the Real Issues

    The real-world threats faced by private companies or non-profit organisations aren't covered by the ISO certification mill; today we publish the last post on this topic before proceeding to some practical examples



  23. [Meme] Medical Data Sovereignty

    What happens when your medical records/data are accessible to a company based abroad after a mysterious NDA with the Gates Foundation? The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) does not mind.



  24. The ISO Delusion: Sirius Open Wash Ltd. and Medical Data/Projects at Risk/Peril

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ was good at gloating about “ISO” as in ISO certification (see our ISO wiki to understand what ISO truly is; ISO certification needs to be more widely condemned and exposed) while signing all sorts of dodgy deals and lying to clients (some, like the Gates Foundation, were never mentioned because of a mysterious NDA); security and privacy were systematically neglected and some qualified as criminal negligence (with fines/penalties likely an applicable liability if caught/reported)



  25. Links 24/01/2023: Wine 8.0 is Ready, FSF Bolsters Copyleft

    Links for the day



  26. Azure Has Layoffs Again, Microsoft Still Cutting

    Even supposed ‘growth’ areas at Microsoft are being culled (this growth is faked, it is a lie)



  27. Links 24/01/2023: Tails 5.9 and ArcoLinux v23.02

    Links for the day



  28. Links 24/01/2023: GStreamer 1.22 and Skrooge Gets New Site

    Links for the day



  29. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 23, 2023

    IRC logs for Monday, January 23, 2023



  30. The Inside(r) Story of ISO 'Certification' Mills

    Based on my experiences inside Sirius ‘Open Source’ — as I was there for nearly 12 years — I finally tell what I’ve witnessed about ISO certification processes (see ISO wiki for prior experiences)


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