Bonum Certa Men Certa

Today's Open Invention Network is Run by Former Patent Trolls, Connected to and Backed by Microsoft

It is even disclosed upfront

Jaime Siegel



Summary: Turns out that the Open Invention Network (OIN) is nowadays about "Linux" as much (or as little) as the "Linux Foundation" is; it's all about money and power

IT IS no secret that OIN has origins in a patent bully, IBM, which also gave it its first CEO. It is also no secret that OIN does not oppose software patents. We wrote about it some months ago. It is not, however, noticed by many that the current CEO (Tim Geithner's tennis partner) used to work in roles that resemble those OIN is supposed to shield against. As Wikipedia notes, "Bergelt was then brought into Motorola Corporation in Schaumburg, IL to establish and serve as General Manager of its Strategic Intellectual Asset Management business unit focused on distilling value from Motorola’s intellectual property. In addition, he served as Director of Technology Strategy during his tenure at Motorola.



"Following his experience at Motorola and coincident with the departure of Bob Galvin from the Motorola Board of Directors, he was recruited by Kelso & Company, the New York-based private equity firm, to manage IP strategy, business development and licensing for its IP-based portfolio company – Cambridge Display Technology (CDT) – in Cambridge, England.

"So the OIN's main licensing person is a former patent troll basically.""After establishing the strategy and licensing program at CDT for Kelso, Bergelt was then engaged by Texas Pacific Group (TPG) as a full-time advisor to its Technology Investment Group, until he was recruited by Principal Financial Group to establish and run the first-of-its-kind IP Fund and financial services advisory firm, focused on transforming IP into a viable source of collateral and a fourth lending vertical to complement asset-based lending backed by property/plant/equipment, accounts receivable and inventory.

"During his tenure as the CEO of Paradox Capital, Bergelt worked with professionals from banking and IP law to raise over $350MM in capital that enabled Paradox to pioneer the emergence of IP as a viable asset class in asset-based lending and, in so doing, obviate the necessity for second lien lending into IP-rich companies."

It was only then that he was recruited by OIN, after he had done some of the very things OIN was supposed to be against. But it gets worse. Having checked who they have added since, I can't help seeing an MPEG-LA* veteran acting as "Global Director of Licensing". He also worked for a Microsoft-connected, anti-Linux troll called Acacia. So the OIN's main licensing person is a former patent troll basically. Wonderful! An OIN so debased that even Microsoft can join it. ____ * MPEG-LA is legally and technically a patent troll (also its CEO), which is working closely with Microsoft and is nowadays using software patents (even in Europe last month) to blackmail companies that ship GNU/Linux/Android.

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