Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 23rd May 2011 20:36 UTC
Legal Apple has responded to the recent patent threats again iOS application developers by Lodsys. Bruce Sewell, Apple's senior vice president and general counsel, sent a letter to Lodsys CEO Mark Small detailing why the threats are baseless. Apple claims they have a license to the patents in question, and that the iOS application developers are mere customers - not distributors.
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Comment by Lazarus
by Lazarus on Mon 23rd May 2011 20:47 UTC
Lazarus
Member since:
2005-08-10

Nice to see Apple doing something positive for a change.

Reply Score: 5

v PFF
by twitterfire on Mon 23rd May 2011 21:16 UTC
RE: PFF
by WereCatf on Tue 24th May 2011 02:13 UTC in reply to "PFF"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Hurr durr, is the applenews.com domain already taken?


It resolves to IP address of 63.87.252.160 on my PC, so I'd say: yes, it is.

Anything else you need assistance with?

Reply Score: 6

Comment by Stratoukos
by Stratoukos on Mon 23rd May 2011 21:26 UTC
Stratoukos
Member since:
2009-02-11

They're not actually implementing any new code that itself infringes on Lodsys' patents, and as such.

Ahh, but you see, they haven't patented code that implements in-app purchases, they've patented the idea of in-app purchases.

So, if you consider OSNews to be a web app, then the OSNews premium button (does this still exists?) actually infringes said patent, and preys on the hard work of poor, poor Lodsys.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by Stratoukos
by Alfman on Mon 23rd May 2011 22:08 UTC in reply to "Comment by Stratoukos"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

Stratoukos,

Yep, that's pretty much how patents work these days. Patents encourage this type of behavior, and those who don't play (because the system sucks all around) are the victims.

Reply Score: 3

A rough translation
by mbpark on Tue 24th May 2011 01:25 UTC
mbpark
Member since:
2005-11-17

Dear Lodsys,

Cut your crap or we'll sue you into oblivion.

Love,

Apple

Reply Score: 1

RE: A rough translation
by WereCatf on Tue 24th May 2011 02:09 UTC in reply to "A rough translation"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Dear Lodsys,

Cut your crap or we'll sue you into oblivion.

Love,

Apple


Coming from one of the heavy-weight 300 pound gorillas in the room that right there can be quite helluva daunting.

I deeply dislike Apple and their behaviour generally and while I understand that they're doing this only to keep developers using their App Store I still applaud them for doing the right thing, even if not for the correct reasons.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: A rough translation
by Laurence on Tue 24th May 2011 07:46 UTC in reply to "RE: A rough translation"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26


Coming from one of the heavy-weight 300 pound gorillas in the room that right there can be quite helluva daunting.

I deeply dislike Apple and their behaviour generally and while I understand that they're doing this only to keep developers using their App Store I still applaud them for doing the right thing, even if not for the correct reasons.

I'd applaud them more if they weren't being so hypocritical.

It seems in "Apple-land", they have the right to hold patents and thus sue competing organizations where as nobody else is allowed to.

I guess the key difference here is that Lodsys aren't actually competing on anything - so if I had to pick sides I would hope for Apple. However the hypocrisy is still hard to swallow.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: A rough translation
by moondevil on Tue 24th May 2011 08:01 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: A rough translation"
moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

That is why I despise all patents.

Nowadays they don't help at all. There was innovation before patents existed.

All companies are hypocrite, all of them make use of the patent system, and all of the big players complain about it, when they lose a big case.

Luckily so far in Europe we have manage to keep them away, I imagine for how long still.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: A rough translation
by Neolander on Tue 24th May 2011 08:59 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: A rough translation"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

What about industrial patents ? I don't know how much they last, and under which terms they work (do they imply a precise description of the patented product, like technical drawings or chemical formulas, or can you patent ideas and algorithms ? Is there a requirement of notability, or can you patent an iPod Touch's rounded corners ?)

Edited 2011-05-24 09:00 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: A rough translation
by _txf_ on Tue 24th May 2011 09:15 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: A rough translation"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

Is there a requirement of notability, or can you patent an iPod Touch's rounded corners ?)


Yes you can (I think they did), It's called a design patent. Another Idiocy as design is pretty much covered by copyright...

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: A rough translation
by Neolander on Tue 24th May 2011 12:38 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: A rough translation"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Actually, it's more like they patented a significant part of the casing, but although this patent makes me laugh to no end, I have to admit that it's not a pure "rounded corner" patent. The patent also includes things like a description of the holding springs and detailed steps of the manufacturing process, so it's not something ridiculously obvious, imprecise, and impossible to avoid.

http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d...

Edited 2011-05-24 12:45 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: A rough translation
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 25th May 2011 15:31 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: A rough translation"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Yes you can (I think they did), It's called a design patent. Another Idiocy as design is pretty much covered by copyright...


Its probably made millions for all of these inventor help companies, that cost a fortune and you just end up with a design patent worth nothing.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: A rough translation
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Tue 24th May 2011 15:06 UTC in reply to "RE: A rough translation"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14


I deeply dislike Apple and their behaviour generally and while I understand that they're doing this only to keep developers using their App Store I still applaud them for doing the right thing, even if not for the correct reasons.


Even corporations can do bad things some of the times and good things other times. Applaud them for the good, and criticize them for the bad. In this case, Apple is doing the right thing for the right reason.

Its absolutely insane to think that an application developer is liable for the functionality provided deeper inside an api. It woudl destroy third party development on any operating system that has licensed ip. Even the MIAA isn't that insane. The concept makes h264 licensing seem reasonable.

Edited 2011-05-24 15:07 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: A rough translation
by MacMan on Tue 24th May 2011 12:48 UTC in reply to "A rough translation"
MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

Dear Lodsys,

Cut your crap or we'll sue you into oblivion.

Love,

Apple


I'd love to say this were true, but thats the problem with patent trolls:
they produce nothing, they create nothing only litigation.

As far as I know, without an actual product, you have nothing to sue them over. They need to have a product that allegedly infringes on one of your patents to be able to sue them.

The only thing one can do against patent trolls is go though the long drawn out process of trying to prove their patents are invalid.

Edited 2011-05-24 12:51 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: A rough translation
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 24th May 2011 13:17 UTC in reply to "RE: A rough translation"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Well, what goes around comes around. Apple abuses the patent system in the exact same way as Lodsys does. Apple complaining about Lodsys' actions is incredibly hypocritical.

But then, I've come to expect nothing less from technology companies, and Apple in particular.

Reply Score: 2

RE: A rough translation
by clasqm on Wed 25th May 2011 05:50 UTC in reply to "A rough translation"
clasqm Member since:
2010-09-23

Dear Lodsys CEO

Please contact Darl McBride and find out what the wilderness looks like.

Love

Steve

Reply Score: 1