Bonum Certa Men Certa

Google Should Invest Wealth in Reformists, Not Patent Lawyers

What Google needs is disruption, not compliance and conformity

Christabel Pankhurst



Summary: Google's newly-found sources of cash should be used to remove software patents rather than make the whole system more toxic for everyone

GOOGLE has just announced that it activates over 550,000 Android devices per day. This pace keeps increasing at an amazing rate and Google's stock has just jumped through the roof, so it's easy to see why Microsoft and Apple are nervous. We're now at a crucial crossroad where Google can either decide to abolish software patents (to the degree possible, and possibly by liaising with others) or start getting "evil" by jumping on the patents treadmill, aka the Patents Cartel (because that's what it is -- a cartel). Apple bounced on this bandwagon a very long time ago and Microsoft only did so years ago. While some prefer tackling this serious issue with satire, others give us less humouring reports that indicate Google is replacing programmers with lawyers, or at least substituting growth priorities. This one article sheds light on the impact of patent lawyers inside Google. As we pointed out before -- even years ago -- it's an insidious transformation which put patents supporters at the heart of a company better known for its engineering. This is harming innovation and raising the cost of products everyone buys. We really ought to pressure Google to do the right thing as it will be increasingly tempted to shut the public out; that's what the lawyers Google is hiring would want. To necessitate their job they need to ensure Google dives deep inside the patent pools.



"We really ought to pressure Google to do the right thing as it will be increasingly tempted to shut the public out; that's what the lawyers Google is hiring would want."Microsoft and its patent trolls are suing and extorting for a living now (offence mode, with patents also going to Lodsys to innovatively attack apps with 'More Apps' links, owing to support from Microsoft's former CTO), whereas Google claims to be after patents for "defensive" purposes. That's what all companies that are winning call their patents. Well, the only defensive patent is one that self-destructs safely. Even Red Hat's patents are a threat because Red Hat might be sold one day, so the "defensive patent" excuse is rather lame. We have repeatedly asked Red Hat to provide legal assurance for such circumstances, but our suggestions fell on deaf ears around Mr. Fontana (whose loyalty to clients comes before ideology).

By means of deterrence, any patent -- whether offensive or not -- is an impediment to innovation and a recent study helped show this. Even patent lawyers paid attention rather than ignore it. From Patently-O:

James Bessen, A Generation of Software Patents Do patents benefit software firms? James Bessen examines this issue through both a survey of existing literature and a new empirical study. Bessen finds that although the number of software-related patents has grown rapidly over the past decade, the share of those patents obtained by software firms has remained relatively small, and is largely accounted for by the activity of a small number of large software firms. In other words, most software patents go to firms outside the software industry. Bessen also provides data that brings into question the value of patents to startup software firms and examines changes in the probability that a software patent will be involved in litigation during the first four years of its patent life.


Richard Waters, a longtime Microsoft apologist from the Financial Times, tries to dare Google into entering the patent wars (rather than abolishing those patents). For Google, any attempt to enter these wars would be foolish as it starts almost from 0. To provide some new numbers from this week's news:

During the earnings call after Google announced their Q2 2011 earnings today, a question was asked about the patent issues surrounding Google right now. Specifically, Android is under assault from Oracle as well as Microsoft and Apple. This is happening because Google only has roughly 700 patents, and they recently lost a bid to gain Nortel’s 6,000+ patents — with those going to, who else, Microsoft and Apple, among others. So what is Google going to do?


We have urged Google many times before to just put back the money it makes from everyone into defending everyone. Google can help everyone by putting an end to software patents, or at least trying to. The public would participate.

"We have urged Google many times before to just put back the money it makes from everyone into defending everyone."It is not too late for Google to reform the system and if it fails to do so things might get worse because Microsoft is likely going to send its mole in Nokia to attack Android phone makers (although not only Android is affected) after Nokia did this to Apple. Nokia and Apple are both part of the cartel, and both have been helping MPEG-LA. Watch what Apple is doing thanks to the incompetence of the USPTO: "Apple's policy of trying to claim the patents for as many Android features as possible has continued with the blessing of the US Patent Office.

"Jobs' Mob is unhappy that it is losing market share to Android and appears to be applying for as many patents as possible to patent troll the operating system out of the market.

"What is alarming is thanks to the vagaries of the US Patent system it appears to be getting away with it.

"Yesterday the US Patent and Trademark office gave Apple a patent which covers that nifty way that smartphones can turn from a portrait to a landscape by turning."

"Losing Apple Wants To Ban Competitors," says Muktware, which furthermore states that the "Court Questions Oracle's Damage Reports" (Oracle is close to Apple, via the CEOs):

Software patent troll Microsoft's PR machine is pumping as much mis-information as it can, oracling Oracle's victory in Android court case. The reality is, Oracle is facing one after other set-backs in the case. After USPTO's rejection of a majority of Oracle's patents, the court refused to buy Iain Cockburn's report and asked both parties (Google and Oracle) to name two experts to verify damages.


The reason Techrights can no longer concentrate on Novell and Microsoft in isolation is that there is a big problem behind all of these embodiments and to personify the problem made sense until some time last year when Oracle and Apple both attacked Android, showing their willingness to derail competition in truly nefarious ways. Google ought to know what the permanent solution will be; it's not about winning a case here and there or even invalidating a patent here and there. Google needs to end all software patents in one fell swoop. The USPTO has lost the plot, as we shall show in a later post.

Recent Techrights' Posts

[Meme] The Doyen and the Colonel
EPO continues to prioritise lawbreaking over knowledge
Microsoft Poetterix is Work in Progress
Linux's New DRM Panic 'Blue Screen of Death' In Action
[Meme] Community of People to be Exploited, Then Thrown Away, Left Behind or Even Slandered
Debian.org front page
 
[Meme] Canonical Has Basically Become Novell II
Today's Canonical...
While Everyone is Furious at Vista 11 (Over TPM, Recall and Other Malicious 'Features') Canonical is Selling It to People
So the only thing Canonical says about Windows is that you should give it a try?
Links 18/06/2024: Adobe and Internet Archive in Trouble
Links for the day
Peter Duffy Explains SystemD
Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer!
EPO Union Action: Next Week SUEPO The Hague and SUEPO Munich Talk About New Pension Scheme (NPS) and Salary Savings Plan (SSP)
So there are basically 32 days left for more people to intervene
[Meme] Wait Till Systemd-Recall
The only thing Linux still needs is a forensics backdoor
GNU/Linux Up This Month in India (or Why Famous Criminal Bill Gates Keeps Visiting Modi)
truth tends to catch up with people
24/7 Work Discipline
it's not so much about how much (or how long) one works, it's about how one works and whether one feels comfortable doing it
Adamant Conformism is an Enemy of Science
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man"
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Monday, June 17, 2024
IRC logs for Monday, June 17, 2024
Links 18/06/2024: Further Mass Layoffs and Gemini Leftovers
Links for the day
At IBM, "Brownnosing is the Norm."
Many of these comments are from IBM insiders
Myanmar/Burma: Google Gains One Percent, Microsoft Loses One Percent Since the LLM Hype ('Bing Chat')
it's not hard to understand LLMs didn't replace real search and didn't replace Google, either
[Meme] KISS, not SAAS
Gemini Protocol turns 5 in exactly 2 days
Hostageware: The Threat of Clown Computing (or 'SaaS', Another Misnomer or Buzzword) to Computer Users Everywhere
This problem isn't limited to Free software adopters
Jean-Pierre Giraud, Possible Forgeries & Debian: elections, judgments, trademark already canceled, archaeologist
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Six on the Beach: After Losing Six Continents Microsoft is Losing Oceania Too
Based on the 6- or 7-continent view of the world
Links 17/06/2024: Mass Layoffs Accelerating in Tech, Concerns About Impact of the Net
Links for the day
Gemini Links 17/06/2024: Hyprland Analysed and No Use for Betrusted
Links for the day
Microsoft Can Never Make a Comeback Anymore, the Community is Shutting It Out
We're relying on the real community, not fake ones or coopted ones
The World is Becoming (or Has Already Become) Linux
An intercontinental success story
Georgia: Bing Share Fell by Half Since 'Bing Chat' (LLM Hype), Fell Behind Yandex As Well
Georgia's situation is interesting
Alexandre Oliva's FSF disposition
During my recent trip for LibrePlanet, I was fortunate to have, or at least start, long conversations with nearly everyone in FSF staff
[Meme] SPI and 'FSFE': Sponsored by Microsoft to...
women's instincts do not matter to these strongmen
One More (Failed) Attempt to Deplatform the Sites by Harassing and Threatening Webhosts
What we're seeing here is a person who abuses the system in Canada at Canadian taxpayers' expense trying to do the same in the UK, at British taxpayers' expense
[Meme] Shitburger of an LLM
IBM and the Hololens
Links 17/06/2024: Chatbot Nonsense Thrown Under the Bus (Severe Failure, Pure Hype), How to Finance Free Software 'Hackers'
Links for the day
Debian's Personal Attacks Are Upsetting Women, Too
Female Debian Developer: "I Believe Daniel [Pocock] is On the Right Track."
Microsoft's Bing is So Irrelevant in Moldova (1%) That Russia's Yandex is About 5 Times Bigger
How much longer before Microsoft throws in the towel?
12 Days Have Passed Since the Edward Brocklesby Revelations and Debian Project Has Said Absolutely Nothing About That
One must therefore assume they have nothing to say in their defence (covering up severe security failings)
Yes, You Can
Unless you live somewhere like Russia...
[Meme] Listen to the Experts
Bill Gates didn't even finish university]
Roy and Rianne's Righteously Royalty-free RSS Reader (R.R.R.R.R.R.) and the Front-End Interfaces
As the Web deteriorates the availability, quality and prevalence of RSS feeds is not improving, to put it mildly
Algeria Shows High GNU/Linux and Android Adoption, All-Time High and Almost Three-Quarters of Web Requests
GNU/Linux was below 3%, now it is above 3%
Mass Layoffs at Microsoft-owned GitHub (About 80 Percent of the Staff in India Laid Off)
It's not just in India
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, June 16, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, June 16, 2024
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Scarecrows, Moles, Ham Radio, and No IPs
Links for the day
Africa is Android and Green (Chrome, Not Just Android Logo)
In Africa Firefox is almost below 1% now
Coercion From the "Consent" and "CoC" Crowd is a Self-Defeating Tactic
Freedom of the press; Nothing less
Covering Abuses and Corruption
We'll never surrender to blackmail
According to statCounter, GNU/Linux Increased From 3.77% to 3.89% This Month (Worldwide), Windows Now Below 20% in 78 Nations, Below 10% in 27 Nations
Highest since March (for GNU/Linux)
Ubuntu Running Out of Energy
Its planet too is deteriorating
Links 16/06/2024: In Defence of Email and Why Recycling Symbol Lost All Meaning
Links for the day
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Computer Science Course Union and Potentiometer
Links for the day
Cross border crime: sale of Swiss insurance in France and European Union without authorisation
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Letting Microsoft systemd Manage /home Was a Terrible Idea All Along
systemd-tmpfiles, deleting /home
Patriotism is OK, But We Need Facts and Reason, Not Blind Obedience to Authority
Very seldom in the history of human civilisation has groupthink proven to be of real merit
When You Touch One of Us You Touch All of Us
We have a principled, uncompromising stance on this matter
Links 16/06/2024: New Sanctions Against Russia, Fentanylware (TikTok) Causing More Problems
Links for the day
Social Control Media in Japan: Twitter (X) Has Collapsed, YouTube Rising (Apparently)
What a genius Mr. Musk is!
Windows Cleansed in South Africa (Already Hovering Around 10% Market Share)
Plus Microsoft's mass layoffs in Africa
[Meme] Satya Nadella's Windows PC RECALLS Not What He Did
Satya got lucky
Usage of Let's Encrypt in Geminispace Has Collapsed (That's a Good Thing!)
Ideally, or eventually, all capsules will sign their own certificates or have their own CA
North Macedonia: Windows Down From 99.2% to 28.5%
Last year it was even measured at 26%
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, June 15, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, June 15, 2024
Gemini Links 16/06/2024: Hand Held Maneuvering Unit and Hugo Static Files
Links for the day