Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 13th Feb 2012 19:26 UTC
In the News The first big hurdle has been taken by Google and Motorola Mobility. The European Union has given the green light for Google to proceed with its acquisition of Motorola Mobility. The EU will, however, monitor the deal and its outcome for potential patent abuse. Update: And there we go, the US DoJ has approved the deal as well. Update II: The just-linked DoJ report also approves the Nortel patent sale to Apple, Microsoft, and RIM. I'm hoping for lots of fireworks here so the patent system blows up in Google's, Microsoft's and Apple's faces, so we can point and laugh about all the money they wasted.
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RE[3]: Huh?
by cfgr on Tue 14th Feb 2012 01:52 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Huh?"
cfgr
Member since:
2009-07-18

Motorola did get an injunction for a FRAND patent in Germany and they actually did use it to block iPhone sales. Apple has appealed then and the injunction has been put on hold, but abuse over FRAND patents by Motorola is happening right now.


I was not aware of the Motorola-Apple case in Germany, though I could have guessed it. That just shows how screwed up the whole patent system has become, it's basically a free for all deathmatch with the customer as ultimate loser, due to either monopolies or licence fees.

But still, I find suing someone over some joke patent a lot more dangerous than suing someone over a FRAND patent. If Nokia/Motorola/Samsung were unfair in their requirements, then the court will decide against them, but at least there went some research in those FRAND patents. Can anyone tell me what kind of research it took to come up with some rounded rectangle design or a "slide to next photo" animation? I bet those ideas took less than 30 seconds to come up with, and the implementation about half an hour along with some parameter tweaking.

Here is how it goes in pretty much every small project/company:
Developer 1: "check this animation to go to the next photo, looks cool right?"
Developer 2: "goes a bit too fast and maybe it should be dragged a bit further before it switches, let's fine-tune it."

And if they're working for a big company:
Manager: "looks nice guys, let's patent it."

Edited 2012-02-14 01:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: Huh?
by jared_wilkes on Tue 14th Feb 2012 02:04 in reply to "RE[3]: Huh?"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

I don't think anyone who is arguing within our legal framework(s) for IP are arguing that standard-essential patent holders don't have a right to reasonable rates of remuneration or that the patents don't have merit. We are arguing that it is far more damaging to withhold access to those standard-essential patents in retaliation (or "self-defense) after previously pledging to not deny access to them on any discriminatory basis when there are other recourses to "defense" other than subverting and destroying necessary standards.

The value or merit of non-essential patents doesn't even enter into the argument from this perspective.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[5]: Huh?
by cfgr on Tue 14th Feb 2012 02:40 in reply to "RE[4]: Huh?"
cfgr Member since:
2009-07-18

The value or merit of non-essential patents doesn't even enter into the argument from this perspective.

Yes it does, that's what your initial question was about.

We are arguing that it is far more damaging to withhold access to those standard-essential patents in retaliation (or "self-defense) after previously pledging to not deny access to them on any discriminatory basis when there are other recourses to "defense" other than subverting and destroying necessary standards.

My point is: arguing about licencing terms and whether they're FRAND is easier than arguing about patents themselves and establishing whether they're valid or not and whether you violate them or not. The scale of the latter is just that much bigger because you have to repeat the process for every single joke patent you're getting sued over, therefore it is more damaging.

Edited 2012-02-14 02:41 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[5]: Huh?
by JAlexoid on Tue 14th Feb 2012 10:42 in reply to "RE[4]: Huh?"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

You are conveniently missing the R in FRAND. Setting a licensing fee of one billion dollars for a patent might just well be very reasonable, but very much discriminatory.
The patent licensing for the whole GSM/UMTS/LTE portfolio is very much discriminatory, it is also very reasonable given the costs of development.

There is also the other thing, you can't claim that you had the right to infringe only because the patents are FRAND encumbered. That is what the German court has said one more time.
But this time, for Apple being so cocky about it's infringement, they added an injunction.

Remember, Apple has a history of disregarding other people's patents just to come to them later saying - "Sorry, can we make a license?"

Reply Parent Score: 4