Bonum Certa Men Certa

More Proof That the Patent System Shot Down Innovation and Shot Self in Foot

"when the patent quality bar is so low, everyone loses"Ever since the aggressive saber-rattling of May 2007, one of our goals here has been to show that patents are not to be dreaded. Many of them deserve to be mocked and their potential impact dismissed. How so? For starters, some of the companies that have a history of patent abuse have themselves asked for a reform. With proper reform, FUD surrounding Linux will most likely just vanish.

Here are some of the latest examples of patent abuse, harassment, and trolling.

From 'Innovation' to Banning of Products



The very latest abuser appears to have painted Sun Microsystems as its victim. NetApp targets ZFS. It strives to shoot down one of Sun's break-and-butter products.

NetApp files suit against Sun over ZFS

[...]

The patents in question include methods and techniques for error correction, software RAID and, according to the NetApp complaint, the method for maintaining consistent states of a file system and for creating user accessible read-only copies of a file system. "We want them to stop developing ZFS, stop distributing [it] and stop doing derivative works with it in particular," Warmenhoven said.


A classic case that has been mentioned here for quite a while is the Broadcom/Qualcomm dispute. There was an embargo. Here is the latest:

Broadcom wins antitrust appeal against Qualcomm

[...]

Broadcom's lawsuit accused Qualcomm of breaking a pledge to the standards board to be fair when licensing patents for technology it owned. That technology has been adopted as an industry standard to promote interoperability among handsets and carriers.


Here is another ludicrous case where Apple, Acer, Dell, Gateway are targeted.

The firm alleges the companies have breached patent 7,009,655B2 - catchily titled "method and system for direct recording of video information onto a disk medium".


Re-innovating the Wheel



How about this sophisticated patent?

The present invention relates to an information system, comprising an input device, a presentation device, a processing unit and a database with an address register for storing address information, such as name, address, telephone and telefax numbers, for legal and/or natural persons, said system providing structured access to said address information.


Sounds like a digital address book. Where is the invention? How about this one from Microsoft?

"Last week, the USPTO published a rather odd Microsoft patent application for Content Ratings and Recommendations, which describes how religious-based communities and other 'subcultures' can use the patent-pending process to prevent their members from viewing undesirable television programs and movies."


"Prior art," says anyone who wasn't born yesterday. Amazon wanted to patent the idea of book recommendation, which is equally sad.

Here's a new one from Google.

Google owes its success to putting advertising into parts of our lives where no one has ever put adverts before. Now a new patent illustrates the extent of its ambitions.


Hope is Not Lost



The only good news is that, later this week, the Congress will vote on the need for a patent system reform.

"We've spent three Congresses on this," said Steve Elmendorf, a lobbyist for the Coalition for Patent Fairness, a group of technology companies, such as Microsoft, Apple Inc. and Cisco Systems Inc., that favor the legislation.


Ironically (or not), Microsoft will stand in the way.

Microsoft Corp.'s success in reversing a $1.52 billion trial loss was the latest in a series of court victories that may undermine its chance for broad changes in U.S. patent law this year.


Groklaw continues its bug squashing effort and it also sets its eye on Microsoft patents that are good candidates for dismissal.

For sure I don't want any patents getting approved that might be used against FOSS someday because I wasn't paying attention. My worry is that because we have been busy elsewhere, the Microsoft patent submission might slide by, get approved by default despite there being prior art we neglected to mention, and then the FUD machine can start up about how it's now a super strong patent that made it through a FOSS community examination.


In relation to OOXML, Matt Aslett said that nobody wins when the standards are low. Let's borrow this nice phrase and say that when the patent quality bar is so low, everyone loses. Science loses. Technology is stalled. Only lawyers win.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Perens on a Stick
Remember what Novell did and how few (barely anyone) sided with Novell
Andrew Tanenbaum Gets an Award for His Work on MINIX
ACM one week ago
Twitter's Fall to Irrelevancy in Europe
Musk bought a dud
[Meme] 'Useless' Kids of EPO Examiners
malnourished?
Granting Loads of Monopolies in Europe (to Foreign Corporations of Epic Size and Far Too Much Power Inside Europe) is Vastly More Important Than Raising European Kids Properly?
"Efficiency" first? Whose? Corporations or families? No wonder so many young families are hesitant to have any kids these days; that's particularly true in east Asia and also in north America, not just Europe
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Free Speech (Online) Angle
Free speech is a fundamental tenet of a free society
Edward Brocklesby (ejb) & Debian: Hacking expulsion cover-up in proximity to Oxford and GCHQ
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Microsoft Windows in Nicaragua: From 98% to Less Than 25%
Operating System Market Share Nicaragua
 
EPO Issues in The Hague
a report dated 4 days ago about a meeting that took place 12 days ago
[Meme] Garbage in, Garbage Out (EPO Patent Quality)
"Get back to work"
When the Employer Makes You Too Sick to Go to Work (New EPO Document)
"registering when you are sick"
[Meme] Putin's Red Flags
Firefox ESR or Firefox USSR
The Corporate/Mainstream Media and Even Social Control Media is Distorting the Record About What Mozilla Actually Did (It Originally Surrendered to Vladimir Putin)
Mozilla being avoided for purely technical reasons (sites not being compatible with it) is one thing. Foolishly, Mozilla is giving people more political reasons to also shun Mozilla. This is suicide.
GNU/Linux Up Some More This Morning, Windows Down Sharply Even in Rich Countries
Microsoft is in trouble in the Muslim world
United Arab Emirates (UAE) Rising... Towards 5% for ChromeOS and GNU/Linux
the latest numbers show it growing from about 0.1% to around 2.4% for GNU/Linux, plus 2.01% for Chromebooks (ChromeOS), i.e. about 5% in total.
Links 24/06/2024: New Research, New Attacks on Justices Sceptical of Patent Maximalists, European Commission for Copyright Maximalists
Links for the day
[Meme] 12 Years a Fedora Volunteer
IBM gives me a 'free' Fedora badge as recognition
IBM Slavery: Not a New Problem
When IBM got rid of Ben Cotton it showed the world how much it valued Fedora
Why They Want to Abolish Master/Slave Terminology (Because This is What They're Turned Free Software Into)
It used to be about community; GAFAM turned that into exploitation and worse
Roy and Rianne's Righteously Royalty-free RSS Reader (R.R.R.R.R.R.) Version 0.2 is Released
They say summer "officially" started some days ago
Torvalds' Number Two Quit Linux a Decade Ago and Has Since Then Earned an Honorary Doctorate
Revisiting Fuzix and Alan Cox
GNU/Linux Reaches All-Time High in Tunisia
Based on statCounter
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, June 23, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, June 23, 2024
You Know the Microsoft Products Really Suck When...
"Qualcomm and Microsoft go 'beyond the call of duty' to stop independent Copilot+ PC reviews"
IBM and "Regime Change"
Change of regime is not the same as freedom
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Community Angle
Somebody needs to call them out on their BS
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Software Angle
Gemini Protocol has just turned 5 - i.e. roughly the same age as our Git repositories
Techrights in the Coming Decade: The Patent Angle
Next month marks 10 years since we began covering EPO leaks
Wookey, Intrigeri, Cryptie & Debian pseudonyms beyond Edward Brocklesby
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
[Meme] Choice Versus Freedom
So When Do I Start Having Freedom? Freedom is choice between the GAFAMs
Digital Liberation of Society at Times of Armed Conflicts and Uncertainty
We have technical contributions, not just written output
Links 23/06/2024: More Microsoft Cancellations, Growing Repression Worldwide
Links for the day
Gemini Links 23/06/2024: The Magician and the Hacker, tmux Tips
Links for the day
Links 23/06/2024: Twitter/X Wants Your Money, Google Reports a Billion DMCA Takedowns in Four Months
Links for the day
Digital Restrictions (Like DRM) Don't Have Brands, We Need to Teach People to Hate the Underlying Restrictions, Not Companies That Typically Come and Go
Conceptually, the hens should fear humans, not the farmer who cages them
Going Above 4% Again
Maybe 4% (or above) by month's end?
[Meme] Debian's 'Cannon Fodder' Economics
Conflicts of interest don't matter
Conviction, jail for Hinduja family, Debian exploitation comparison
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
According to Microsoft, It's Not a Code of Conduct Violation to Troll Your Victims Whose Files You Are Purging
The group of vandals from Microsoft think it's "funny" (and for a "nominal fee") to troll Microsoft critics
Microsoft Inside Debian is Sabotaging Debian and Its Many Hundreds of Derivatives With SystemD (Microsoft/GitHub Slopware With Catastrophic Bugs is Hardly a New Problem)
What is the moral of the story about The Scorpion and the Frog?
Links 23/06/2024: Hey Hi (AI) Scrapers Gone Very Rogue, Software Patents Squashed at EPO
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, June 22, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, June 22, 2024
Gemini Links 23/06/2024: LoRaWAN and Gemini Plugin for KOReade
Links for the day
Links 22/06/2024: Chat Control Vote Postponed, More Economic Perils
Links for the day
[Meme/Photography] Photos From the Tux Machines Parties
took nearly a fortnight
Uzbekistan: GNU/Linux Ascent
Uzbekistan is almost the same size as France
SLAPP as an Own Goal
We have better things to with our limited time
Independence From Monopolies
"They were ethnically GAFAM anyway..."
GNU/Linux at New Highs (Again) in Taiwan
latest numbers
Links 22/06/2024: More Layoffs and Health Scares
Links for the day
Rwanda: Windows Falls Below 30%
For the first time since 2020 Windows is measured below 30%
[Meme] IBM Lost the Case Over "Dinobabies" (and People Died)
IBM agreed to pay to keep the details (and embarrassing evidence) secret; people never forgot what IBM called its staff that wasn't young, this keeps coming up in forums
Exactly One Year Ago RHEL Became Proprietary Operating System
Oh, you want the source code of RHEL? You need to pay me money and promise not to share with anyone
Dr. John Campbell on Gates Foundation
Published two days ago
Melinda Gates Did Not Trust Bill Gates, So Why Should You?
She left him because of his ties to child sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein
How Much IBM Really Cares About Software Freedom (Exactly One Year Ago IBM Turned RHEL Into Proprietary Software)
RHEL became proprietary software
Fedora Week of Diversity 2024 Was Powered by Proprietary Software
If instead of opening up to women and minorities we might open up to proprietary software, i.e. become less open
18 Countries in Europe Where Windows Fell Below 30% "Market Share"
Many people still use laptops with Windows, but they're outnumbered by mobile users on Android
[Meme] EPO Pensions in the UK
pensioners: looks like another EPO 'reform'
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Friday, June 21, 2024
IRC logs for Friday, June 21, 2024
During Fedora Week of Diversity (FWD) 2024 IBM and Its Subsidiaries Dragged to Court Over Discrimination at the Corporate Level
IBM is a deplorable, racist company
Workers of the European Patent Office Take the Office to Court Over Pension
pensions still precarious
Gemini Links 22/06/2024: FreeBSD vs XFCE and Gemini Bookmarks Syncing Solution
Links for the day