Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 1st Nov 2013 09:34 UTC
Legal

A new front opened today in the patent wars between large technology companies, as a consortium that owns thousands of patents from the Nortel bankruptcy auction filed suit against Google and other manufacturers alleging infringement. Rockstar, which is owned jointly by Apple, Blackberry, Ericsson, Microsoft, and Sony, filed suit in US District Court in Texas. In addition to Google, the consortium has alleged infringement by Asus, HTC, Huawei, LG, Pantech, Samsung, and ZTE.

[...]

Since then, as recounted by Wired, Rockstar has been devoted to reverse-engineering the patents and looking for evidence of infringement. "Pretty much anybody out there is infringing," John Veschi, the CEO of Rockstar, told the magazine. "It would be hard for me to envision that there are high-tech companies out there that don't use some of the patents in our portfolio."

I told you Apple and Microsoft were patent trolls. They specifically set up a satellite company that owns nothing but patents, with the sole goal of attacking the competition in the courtroom instead of the market. What a bunch of low-life scum.

I'm surprised by Sony there, though. They use Android themselves.

Order by: Score:
v Just a slight difference
by wocowboy on Fri 1st Nov 2013 09:52 UTC
RE: Just a slight difference
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 1st Nov 2013 09:54 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

The consortium, however, makes no products. They are the patent troll - funded by Apple, Microsoft, and others. This is a common tactic, and it's still patent trolling.

Reply Score: 15

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by MOS6510 on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

It's a common tactic: outsourcing.

All these companies have outsourced the patent investigation and legal actions to a single company.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Just a slight difference
by Fergy on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Just a slight difference"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

It's a common tactic: outsourcing.

All these companies have outsourced the patent investigation and legal actions to a single company.

That is a really positive spin on this horrible story.

Reply Score: 9

RE[4]: Just a slight difference
by MOS6510 on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Just a slight difference"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I think it's just a factual view of just another stage in a patent war that has been going on for as long most can remember.

As in real life wars there are no good and bad guys or clean and dirty sides anymore.

Reply Score: 0

RE[5]: Just a slight difference
by Fergy on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:38 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Just a slight difference"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

I think it's just a factual view of just another stage in a patent war that has been going on for as long most can remember.

As in real life wars there are no good and bad guys or clean and dirty sides anymore.

I disagree. These patent wars are not to defend the work those companies have done. They are destroying the market so that their platform comes on top.

These patents are not for useful inventions that change the world like the paperclip. They are for simple ideas that hundreds of people have had before it was even patented.

Reply Score: 9

RE[6]: Just a slight difference
by MOS6510 on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:42 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Just a slight difference"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I've made no judgement what the patents ware are for, what companies try to accomplish or who is right and who is wrong.

For me it's just another stage or chapter in a long ongoing situation in which every participant has done things someone could/would consider wrong, evil or silly.

The people who make the rules probably are aware that it has become beyond messy, but I don't thing things change overnight and if things are going to change it may take years for any rules are changed or effects are noticed.

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: Just a slight difference
by bnolsen on Fri 1st Nov 2013 12:35 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Just a slight difference"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

you can't be serious. software and method patents are outright silly. the outcome of this mess will determine if the patent system will be allowed to be used as a way to set up protection rackets for cartels. if it goes through the end result will be unending political and legal corruption as everyone rushes to get an upper hand over others irrespective of market. customers absolutely lose.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Its a common, underhanded tactic to avoid counter litigation but patent trolling it is not. That word had a narrow definition that this does not fit.

The Rockstar Consortium actually has former Nortel employees working there and the stakeholders are just the major parties that facilitated the purchase.

That said, I don't really like it when companies set up shell companies like this. Google (and its OEMs) are now in a very precarious situation. These are very capable and dangerous patents.

Some kind of licensing deal will probably have to come of this, hopefully not enough to make Android a non viable option.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Just a slight difference
by RshPL on Fri 1st Nov 2013 17:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Just a slight difference"
RshPL Member since:
2009-03-13

This case does share one common trait with casual patent trolling though - the obvious nature of the patents, at least the ones covered by the news. Still, pretty lame even if some of the patents are hardware patents.

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by bassbeast on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Sorry but you are wrong, if you want to go by that logic then ALL major corps are by default patent trolls since they nearly all have their patents owned by research divisions that don't actually produce anything.

If you want to complain about something complain about the legal and tax systems that make turning a single company into a big convoluted mess pretty much SOP if you don't want to get pounded by taxes or buried in lawsuits. By splitting up the companies like that you can have one part of a company engaged in a legal battle without dragging the entire company into it, hence why they all split up the companies like that.

As for so called patent trolling? Let us not forget that Google left the Motorola patent suits going when they bought it so they don't have clean hands either and unlike NPEs Nortel did spend hundreds of millions in research to produce those patents which they then licensed with their designs, no different from ARM and nvidia on that front.

Reply Score: 4

v RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by Tony Swash on Fri 1st Nov 2013 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

Of course you don't shed a tear. You're an Apple fanboi.

Reply Score: 8

RE[5]: Just a slight difference
by cdude on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:40 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Just a slight difference"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

First it, the other group, was not Google but Ranger which included Google and Intel. Second Ranger bid 4.4b, Rockstar 4.5b. Theird only once Rockstar was picked an offer to Google came to join. Forth we don't know the conditions. "You can join us if you pay 3/4 of the sum and ..."? The offer was a PR-gag visible by making it to Google not Ranger, not naming conditions, blowing it to the press.

The Moto case came as answer. Sue us and we sue you and we cannot sue you if you not have products hence we outsource our patent-wars.

On top by outsourcing Rockstar bypassed the promise given by Microsoft and Apple to not sue which was condition for the Nortel patents takeover. See http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2012/February/12-at-210.html

Edited 2013-11-01 20:53 UTC

Reply Score: 7

RE[6]: Just a slight difference
by bnolsen on Fri 1st Nov 2013 23:44 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Just a slight difference"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

interesting. very good thing mono never took off and google never went with c#. MS promised never to sue over mono but using a shell company gets around any promises apparently.

Reply Score: 4

v RE[6]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 23:57 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Just a slight difference"
RE[3]: Just a slight difference
by cdude on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Just a slight difference"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

http://www.wired.com/wiredenterprise/2012/05/rockstar/ has some more acurate background information. Most notable

[quote]
When the Rockstar Bidco group purchased Nortel’s patents, the U.S. Department of Justice took a look at the deal, as part of a broader investigation into several large technology patent sales. The DoJ was concerned that patent attacks might somehow be used to knock Rockstar’s competitors out of the smartphone or tablet market. But in February, the DoJ closed its investigation, in part because Microsoft and Apple had promised to license many of their core wireless patents under reasonable terms to anyone who needed them.

But the new company — Rockstar Consortium — isn’t bound by the promises that its member companies made, according to Veschi. “We are separate,” he says. “That does not apply to us.”
[/quote]

Reply Score: 9

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by wocowboy on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 11:10 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
wocowboy Member since:
2006-06-01

No, the consortium makes no products, but other patent trolls are made up simply of groups of lawyers that buy up patents with the sole purpose of bringing lawsuits, never producing products, a completely different thing. This consortium is owned by Microsoft, Apple, Sony, et all. Again, a completely different animal.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by bowkota on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 11:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
bowkota Member since:
2011-10-12

How hypocritic of you ignoring the fact that Google bought Motorolla and continued on going litigation against many other companies, while abusing FRAND licenses.
Not surprised...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Just a slight difference
by Deviate_X on Fri 1st Nov 2013 12:57 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
Deviate_X Member since:
2005-07-11

Lets not forget history: Google was invited to join the group, but instead tried to buy the patents for themselves alone (remember them bidding PI http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110701/23392814939/google-tried-...).

This was simply error of business on the part of Google, sulking about being pressured into a consortium with Microsoft and Apple.

http://cdn.macnn.com/news/1108/microsoft-patentletterlg.jpg

Edited 2013-11-01 13:08 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 13:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

They wouldn't pay more than $4.4 billion for Nortel's patent arsenal but wasted $12 billion on Motorola for broadly licensed or FRAND patents.

Amateur hour at Mountain View.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Just a slight difference
by Lorin on Fri 1st Nov 2013 15:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Just a slight difference"
Lorin Member since:
2010-04-06

Motorola is more than 80 years old and has patents and other documentation that will show prior art.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 18:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Just a slight difference"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Lol, no it will not. Did you see the patents asserted?

Motorola has a broadly licensed and useless portfolio that had not netted it a single win.

Reply Score: 3

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Google didn't buy all of Motorola's patents. It bought the mobile division and just the patents it had. So it doesn't have the semiconductor patents related to the old cpu chips ( those are owned by the spin off freescale). Nor does it have the cell phone networking patents that ( the networks division is now the major part of what will be left after nokia's phones are bought by MS). Nor does it have any of the other Motorola patents related to the current Motorola solutions company.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Just a slight difference
by tkeith on Fri 1st Nov 2013 15:46 UTC in reply to "RE: Just a slight difference"
tkeith Member since:
2010-09-01

You're either naive or not getting the full story. The group was setup with the intent to use the patents as a weapon. Google has publicly stated that they don't think patents should be used offensively. So why would they join a group created to do just that?

Reply Score: 10

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Can you show some evidence that it was set up for that?


It is a company that has no products, but only patents. They are now attacking with those patents. On top of that, the company itself has admitted that its only job is to reverse-engineer other people's products to see if they infringe, adding that according to them, every technology company infringes upon them.

So yes, they have been set up with the sole purpose of patent trolling, and Apple, Microsoft, and Sony are complicit in it. I know you somehow manage to simply ignore anything that doesn't fit into your view of Apple as God's Gift To The World, but it will be hard for you to get rid of this one - but I'm sure you'll amuse us with your attempts.

How does that fit with Google's Motorola division using SEP/FRAND patents offensively?


Those attacks - which are fucking lame and just as bad - started before Google bought Motorola. Doesn't make them any less of a group of assholes for continuing them.

Reply Score: 9

RE[5]: Just a slight difference
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:08 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Just a slight difference"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

At least you're able to admit Moto/Google are just as bad.

Huge improvement over your childish "If I get punched in the face" analogy.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Just a slight difference
by tkeith on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:46 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Just a slight difference"
tkeith Member since:
2010-09-01

As I understand it, the motorola suits started before Google took over, and were in a defense move, not offensive.

Reply Score: 5

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

So yes, they have been set up with the sole purpose of patent trolling, and Apple, Microsoft, and Sony are complicit in it.


There is no evidence I can see that the Rockstar consortium was set up with the prior intention to use the patents to attack Google, if it was why on earth was Google invited to Join? However since the Rockstar acquisition of those patents, an acquisition that Google volunteered not to participate in, Google has continued to deploy SEP based patent attacks. Now the Rockstar patent portfolio is being used to counterattack. What did Google expect?


https://twitter.com/BradSmi/status/98902130412355585

Brad Smith, the general counsel of Microsoft 3rd August 2011

Reply Score: 0

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Nice spinning.

Apple and Microsoft started the patent war versus Android.

Reply Score: 7

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Nice spinning.

Apple and Microsoft started the patent war versus Android.


Nice spin on the history of IP legal actions around smart phones.

Motorola sued Apple first, as did Nokia.

Full legal action chronology is here

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smartphone_wars

Reply Score: 0

RE[6]: Just a slight difference
by balaknair on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 15:17 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Just a slight difference"
balaknair Member since:
2013-11-02

Google didn't buy into the Rockstar consortium for a simple reason. The offer was apparently to Google alone, not the Android OEMs. Up till then the modus operandi of MSFT and Apple was to go after the OEMs instead of Google(and the first suit filed in the iOS vs Android wars was Apple suing HTC). Google wanted those patents to protect its OEMs by giving them something to countersue Apple and MSFT with, which would not have been possible with the Nortel patents if they'd joined Rockstar. OTOH MSFT and Apple could still use those patents against the Android OEMs.

In other words, they'd just be paying for even more ammunition for MSFT and Apple to go after Google's OEMs.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Just a slight difference
by duplex80 on Fri 1st Nov 2013 15:12 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
duplex80 Member since:
2011-05-11

It's important to note that prior to acquiring these patents, Microsoft, Apple, Sony et al were themselves infringing on said patents.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Just a slight difference
by tkeith on Fri 1st Nov 2013 15:48 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
tkeith Member since:
2010-09-01

Rockstar doesn't make things, but Microsoft, apple. ect do. They are using Rockstar to attack their competitors, but don't think that it can be used against them. If it's not a "patent troll" then it's something just as bad.

Reply Score: 8

RE: Just a slight difference
by wibbit on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 08:20 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
wibbit Member since:
2006-03-22

In some way's I agree with you, in that a group of companies that are active in the market set up a separate company to pool their resources, and launch these attacks.

However, the impression I have is that they them selves (either the the individual companies, or the new one), have not actually done much if any of the research, it is using patents that they bought, for the purpose of attacking the competition.

I don't know if I would refer to this as patent trolling, but it's certainly unsavoury.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Just a slight difference
by stimut on Sun 3rd Nov 2013 04:14 UTC in reply to "Just a slight difference"
stimut Member since:
2012-10-08

There is a difference in this situation, in that the lawsuits are being brought about by companies that actually USE and MAKE products that utilize these patents, and not by NPE's

Yes and no. These lawsuits are being brought about by Rockstar, an NPE. From this article http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013/10/patent-war-goes-nuclear-...

Part of Rockstar's strategy is avoiding a patent countersuit by not having any operating businesses. Essentially, the company wants to enjoy the same advantage patent trolls have, even though it's owned by direct Google competitors like Apple and Microsoft.

-----

Apple, Microsoft, Sony, and the rest, make products that utilize these patents and, under current law, deserve to be compensated for their use if indeed they are being infringed, as the courts will determine.

Although it could be argued that if a court rules a certain way, then it is fair and right (and that companies "deserve to be compensated"), I feel that if the laws being used to come to the decision are biased and unfair, then the ruling itself will also be biased and unfair. Personally, I think the current software patent laws are broken in a fundamental way, and so just about any ruling that occurs is not justified.

Reply Score: 1

you forget
by stabbyjones on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:35 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

that sony are a bunch of idiots.

Reply Score: 5

RE: you forget
by viton on Fri 1st Nov 2013 19:12 UTC in reply to "you forget"
viton Member since:
2005-08-09

Sony own <10% of the said company.
http://ia601004.us.archive.org/7/items/gov.uscourts.txed.148256/gov...
Unlikely they want to shoot themselves in a foot.

Reply Score: 2

Ericsson
by judgen on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:52 UTC
judgen
Member since:
2006-07-12

If that is Ericsson as in "Ericsson systems" and not the devices section mostly sold to Sony. Then this will be a very rough ride, their patents cover almost everything phone-network related ever since LM Ericsson was founded.

Hope this suite just fails and goes away.

Reply Score: 4

One would think
by darknexus on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:56 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

that these idiots had better uses for the money they piss away on this patent shit. They could do things like... well, let's think... make the new product everyone wants and blow their competition out of the water? Considering the money spent on this is money essentially given to lawyers for no product innovations whatsoever, one would think management would do a double-take before signing off on this crap.

Reply Score: 3

RE: One would think
by bassbeast on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:15 UTC in reply to "One would think"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Uhhh...hate to break the news to ya friend but you actually will end up with more money from the patents than the product as you don't have to pay for manufacture, testing,shipping,support,returns, etc.

Its pretty common knowledge that MSFT gets more for the patents it holds that affect Android than they do on WinPhones so like it or not its a viable and sound business strategy.

Reply Score: 4

Their motto
by ricegf on Fri 1st Nov 2013 10:57 UTC
ricegf
Member since:
2007-04-25

If you can't compete, litigate.

Reply Score: 8

Leave the US alone
by protomank on Fri 1st Nov 2013 11:04 UTC
protomank
Member since:
2006-08-03

You know, I think Google and the non-american companies (Samsung, Asus, LG, HTC) should just.. leave! Yeah, leave the americans alone!

Let them play with their patent trolling and trillion dollar deficit stagnating evolution and focus ont he rest of the world that will, well, just move ahead instead of promoting stupid patents system.

I know, they want the US money, but listen: maybe it is not worth the effort anymore. You can win much more outside.

Edited 2013-11-01 11:05 UTC

Reply Score: 13

RE: Leave the US alone
by shotsman on Fri 1st Nov 2013 12:15 UTC in reply to "Leave the US alone"
shotsman Member since:
2005-07-22

I can remember lots of things that had big stickers saying

"Not for use or Sale in the USA"

Perhaps it is time for them to return. After all they can't get the ordering right on date fields now can they?

Reply Score: 7

RE: Leave the US alone
by tylerdurden on Fri 1st Nov 2013 18:14 UTC in reply to "Leave the US alone"
tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

If you had bothered to actually read the article, some of the companies pushing the suit ain't American.

(Ironically, a big chunk of Rockstar's troll patent portfolio comes from Nortel, which was a Canadian corporation).

It's a global market, whether you like it or not. Everything is intertwined, Google leaving the US would be monumentally stupid from a business stand point.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Leave the US alone
by reduz on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 15:48 UTC in reply to "Leave the US alone"
reduz Member since:
2006-02-25

It already is like that, and companies that pay patent fees, do so only for the US version of the products, where Apple and Microsoft are still stronger (In the rest of the world, Android completely dominates everything)

Reply Score: 1

Hot on the heels
by SunOS on Fri 1st Nov 2013 12:02 UTC
SunOS
Member since:
2011-07-12

I guess this is connected to news that Android is claimed to be holding 80%+ of the mobile market?

I have to say I find people like Thom weird, so many topics about the negatice effect of patents (and trolling) but then buys the troll's products.

Reply Score: 0

Unusual allies
by franksands on Fri 1st Nov 2013 13:17 UTC
franksands
Member since:
2009-08-18

I find very interesting the Apple and MS unite to fight Android. I never thought I would see them together to do anything.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Unusual allies
by jgagnon on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:39 UTC in reply to "Unusual allies"
jgagnon Member since:
2008-06-24

Microsoft bailed Apple out in the not-too-distant past...

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Unusual allies
by weckart on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:55 UTC in reply to "RE: Unusual allies"
weckart Member since:
2006-01-11

That was less of a bail out and more of a patent cross-licensing agreement in the wake of the copyright infringement case Apple brought against Microsoft.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Unusual allies
by Stephen! on Fri 1st Nov 2013 16:50 UTC in reply to "Unusual allies"
Stephen! Member since:
2007-11-24

I find very interesting the Apple and MS unite to fight Android. I never thought I would see them together to do anything.


Or it's potentially a lose-lose situation for Apple either way. If Android continues to gain marketshare, Apple loses. If Apple helps Microsoft destroy Android, Windows Phone marketshare increases to fill the vacuum left by Android and Apple still loses.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Unusual allies
by bnolsen on Fri 1st Nov 2013 23:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Unusual allies"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

likely apple does want it both ways. they would love to cripple android and get a cut of the extortion revenue at the same time. They probably feel like they can deal with MS since they've already been playing that game.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Unusual allies
by Soulbender on Fri 1st Nov 2013 17:00 UTC in reply to "Unusual allies"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Best Frenemies Forever!

Reply Score: 6

Break Android?
by arkeo on Fri 1st Nov 2013 13:52 UTC
arkeo
Member since:
2008-04-21

AFAIR the whole mess stems from the fact that Android uses a custom Java version that pretty much pisses everyone off.
Bring Android 5 on, new application model, no backwards compatibility. Heck, even Apple pulled something like this off...
Or is it just a dream and we're never gonna be able to pick these patent-vultures off our own sad consumers' backs?

Reply Score: 2

Oh boy
by Drunkula on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:11 UTC
Drunkula
Member since:
2009-09-03

Here we go again

Reply Score: 2

Re:
by kurkosdr on Fri 1st Nov 2013 14:41 UTC
kurkosdr
Member since:
2011-04-11

in US District Court in Texas


Of course, where else? (people who follow patent trolling news understand)

PS: A more calm examination reveals that the patents in the suit are not patents for telecommunication stuff (those are FRAND), but silly overly broad software and UI patents. Yes, it's the "look and feel" lawsuits all over again. If you are a patent lawyer, you 'd better decide what the 4 colors of your 4 Lamborghinis will be.

Edited 2013-11-01 14:42 UTC

Reply Score: 7

Too much Prior Art to be Credible
by Lorin on Fri 1st Nov 2013 15:45 UTC
Lorin
Member since:
2010-04-06

Nortel would not have declared bankruptcy if they had any thing to gain with their patents, but in any case from what I have seen there is plenty of prior art from pre-1990 to shut this down

Reply Score: 4

Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Fri 1st Nov 2013 16:23 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

I thought that there was some condition, that those patents couldn't be used for aggression (or some other antitrust limitation placed on them). So how does this happen now? Or did I remember wrong?

Reply Score: 1

Rockstar?
by tylerdurden on Fri 1st Nov 2013 16:56 UTC
tylerdurden
Member since:
2009-03-17

What's this Grand Theft Patent?


If you can't compete, sue sue sue... I guess. A great day for lawyers though.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Rockstar?
by Soulbender on Fri 1st Nov 2013 17:02 UTC in reply to "Rockstar?"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

And if you have no sense of ethics you can work for Rockstar (seriously? "Rockstar"?? That's their name?)

Reply Score: 6

Comment by Veto
by Veto on Fri 1st Nov 2013 17:37 UTC
Veto
Member since:
2010-11-13

"It would be hard for me to envision that there are high-tech companies out there that don't use some of the patents in our portfolio."

Yet another sign the American Empire is collapsing in on itself due to prioritizing Big Corp interests over the interests of society :-(

Reply Score: 5

Interesting
by slashdev on Fri 1st Nov 2013 18:06 UTC
slashdev
Member since:
2006-05-14

Two of the 4 companies use android, Sony and Blackberry (Blackberry has an android compatibility layer built into BB10...during the beta it even ran the google market place....most android functions have been ported)


Strange bedfellows indeed.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Interesting
by Nelson on Fri 1st Nov 2013 19:11 UTC in reply to "Interesting"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Why is it surprising anyone? Sony was part of the consortium.

Plus this gives them a decent one up on the non licensed Android OEMs.

Reply Score: 3

Technological Feudalism, continued...
by curio on Fri 1st Nov 2013 18:30 UTC
curio
Member since:
2010-05-03

The continuing saga of technological feudalism, another battle for who (of the top globo-corps) will eventually reign supreme.
This is like a case of McDonalds and Wendys wolf-packing together to gain Burger King's market share, only to later attack each other as well when all their other joint competitors have been litigated into oblivion. Or, to get around the monopoly problem, they create a duopoly like Coke and Pepsi and divide the market equitably from some back room.

It's really hard to side with anyone other than the little guys here, whom they've already effectively eliminated from the equation.

The who-sucks-the-least choices are all that seem to remain.

Consortiums > Cartels > Monopolies/Duopolies.

Reply Score: 3

Groklaw replacement
by VistaUser on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:00 UTC
VistaUser
Member since:
2008-03-08

Now that groklaw has closed down, we need a place that discusses the global legal manouvres and keeps an eye on such things, even if it cannot provide analysis.

(technically, we just need something that allows submissions, approval and story ranking?)

Edited 2013-11-01 20:00 UTC

Reply Score: 5

Thermonuclear
by ronaldst on Fri 1st Nov 2013 20:30 UTC
ronaldst
Member since:
2005-06-29

The man wasn't kidding. Apple will get it's revenge.

I am ok with all this fighting. It's gonna press Washington to fix and hopefully kill off all patents. These things are just a way to cheat the free market. And are basically government granted monopolies.

Reply Score: 1

4.5 billion!!??
by arpan on Sat 2nd Nov 2013 16:31 UTC
arpan
Member since:
2006-07-30

I don't get it, why do these companies spend such huge amounts on patents? Google spent 12.5 billion on loss-making Motorola, Apple, Microsoft & others spent 4.5 billion on Nortel patents. HP spent a huge amount on Palm, a large part of that was the patents.

And yet no large lawsuit has come close to a billion dollar payout. Google's 12.5 billion purchase has yielded them very little in terms of offense or defense against patents.

If you spend 4.5 billion and get 2 billion in licencing fees, is that really a successful strategy? Or are they hoping that injunctions etc. will cause more damage to their competitors. From what I've seen, it just seems to require a small feature changed here or there, which barely slows anyone down.

What is the strategy here?

Reply Score: 2

RE: 4.5 billion!!??
by Soulbender on Sun 3rd Nov 2013 07:34 UTC in reply to "4.5 billion!!??"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Well, you know what they say about "Military Intelligence", right? It's the same for Corporate Intelligence, only then it's an actual fact.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Sun 3rd Nov 2013 02:47 UTC
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

...Wish I got a dollar for every time someone whined about or used the term `patent troll/trolling`.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by kefkathecruel
by kefkathecruel on Sun 3rd Nov 2013 15:32 UTC
kefkathecruel
Member since:
2006-01-17

Patent trolls don't produce products based on the patents they hold. Even the most basic of definitions on Wikipedia makes this point. Granted the joint ownership through a third party makes this a grey area.

Even so Apple and Microsoft both manufacture, you know, actual products, whereas Google is a services company.

Add to that Google's baby Motorola has been suing Apple around the world for the last several years AND refusing to license FRAND patents at FRAND rates.

Google had this coming.

Fact is Qualcomm earns four billion a year from patent licenses and their designs are the source of the processors in nearly every single Android phone.

Google

Reply Score: 0

Comment by Stephen!
by Stephen! on Sun 3rd Nov 2013 15:38 UTC
Stephen!
Member since:
2007-11-24

How does a consortium actually work? Does it have to be a unanimous decision to sue, from all of it's members, or is Microsoft more of a ringleader?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Stephen!
by MOS6510 on Mon 4th Nov 2013 05:52 UTC in reply to "Comment by Stephen!"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Apparently Rockstart can act on its own, but it's not likely they will do things their owners won't like.

Reply Score: 2