Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 28th Mar 2013 23:16 UTC
Google This. This is what we need. These are the kind of steps from which we all benefit. Google has just announced the Open Patent Non-Assertion Pledge: the company promises not to sue any users, distributors, or developers of open source products based on the patents it owns (unless first attacked).
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Hyperbole
by Tony Swash on Thu 28th Mar 2013 23:58 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

As we all know, patents are busy tearing the very fabric of this industry apart.


Rubbish. Patents are an irritant at most, and are very entertaining and enthralling for some tech observers, but they seem to have almost zero impact on anything real in the tech industry. What major innovation, product or service has been seriously impacted by patents, what hasn't happened that would have if there were no patents? How different would the tech world be and in what specific ways if there were no patents?

It seems to me that any outsider looking at the tech industry, and the IP and patent landscape, would come to the conclusion that IP protection and patents are actually very ineffective. Almost no product or innovation does not get copied and emulated. About the only area where the law seem to very effective is around brand names and to a less extent branding. Market a phone that's called an iPhone and you will almost certainly end up being blocked by the law, make a phone that looks just like an iPhone (or a Galaxy S4, or any other handset) and most likely it will go on sale and remain on sale largely unencumbered by legal restraint.

There is way too much hysteria and over excitement around the patent issue, it's boring and and in the real world mostly unimportant. The only people it makes a real difference to are lawyers who get a lot of high paid work from it.

Reply Score: -6

RE: Hyperbole
by tylerdurden on Fri 29th Mar 2013 00:20 in reply to "Hyperbole"
tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

Sometimes sarcasm and utter ignorance are so hard to tell apart...

Reply Parent Score: 16

RE: Hyperbole
by shmerl on Fri 29th Mar 2013 00:26 in reply to "Hyperbole"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

but they seem to have almost zero impact on anything real in the tech industry


This can seem only to those who really have zero idea about the industry. To pick one example out of many - Jolla is hesitant to enter US market (initially) precisely because of the patent mess or "minefield" in their language. So here you have it - idiotic patentability on software and design affects the industry, i.e. US users not being able to get Jolla devices with warranty after the launch (but only through gray market).

And don't say that you don't know about the problem of patent trolling, because if you don't - what are you doing trying to claim that patents have zero impact on the industry?

Edited 2013-03-29 00:32 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: Hyperbole
by bassbeast on Sat 30th Mar 2013 10:08 in reply to "RE: Hyperbole"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Its all moot anyway, Apple is gonna ram through DRM into the HTML spec and MPEG-LA is gonna patent troll the living hell out of anybody that doesn't pay their license fees. MPEG-LA has so many patents there pretty much isn't any way other than bandwidth sucking raw video or MPEG-1 (Which IIRC recently fell out of patents) to do squat on the web with video without violating MPEG-LA patents and as Moz found out they don't play well with others.

Nice gesture Google but unless you are willing to buy out MPEG-LA I have a feeling within 3 years its gonna be a 2 way race, 3 way if Google uses the TiVo trick to lock down Android, otherwise it'll be Apple on the high end and MSFT scraping by on the scraps.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Hyperbole
by galvanash on Fri 29th Mar 2013 00:41 in reply to "Hyperbole"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Rubbish. Patents are an irritant at most


http://www.teknoids.net/content/patent-trolls-new-study-and-survey


The number of defendants in NPE patent suits doubled from 2009 (approximately 2,700) to 2011 (more than 5,800).

Direct costs of patent assertions by NPEs are costing our national economy more than $29 billion dollars a year, and that tab also doubled from 2009 to 2011.

Much of the burden of this NPE litigation falls on small and medium-sized companies. 82% of the defendants, accounting for 50% of the defenses, had median revenues of less than $12 million a year.


Bolding mine... Yes, nothing but a minor irritant.

Is seems to me your issue is that you are disgusted with the patent system because you feel it rarely protects inventions. I agree - it rarely does... The problem is it costs thousands of companies billions of dollars every year while being almost totally ineffective...

That is the problem. No one wins but the lawyers...

Reply Parent Score: 11

RE: Hyperbole
by 0brad0 on Fri 29th Mar 2013 01:23 in reply to "Hyperbole"
0brad0 Member since:
2007-05-05

Can you get your head any further up your ass?

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Hyperbole
by looncraz on Fri 29th Mar 2013 09:09 in reply to "Hyperbole"
looncraz Member since:
2005-07-24

What major innovation, product or service has been seriously impacted by patents, what hasn't happened that would have if there were no patents?


Open web standards have been rife with patent problems and has stalled development immensely, giving rise to the proprietary flash plugin's dominance.

Attempts to create competing flash players have been quashed (including my own effort), attempts to create a standard open video codec, audio codec, etc...

The list goes on and on and on...

--The loon

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE: Hyperbole
by gan17 on Fri 29th Mar 2013 11:17 in reply to "Hyperbole"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

Admit it. You were 'camping' here for hours just so your comment would be first, weren't you?

Reply Parent Score: 5

v RE[2]: Hyperbole
by Tony Swash on Fri 29th Mar 2013 12:12 in reply to "RE: Hyperbole"
RE: Hyperbole
by tidux on Fri 29th Mar 2013 13:58 in reply to "Hyperbole"
tidux Member since:
2011-08-13

> what hasn't happened that would have if there were no patents?

Red Hat products can't ship ECDSA or MP3 or H.264 because of patents, which makes things like embedded or security much more likely to use another distribution, or another OS entirely.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Hyperbole
by Tony Swash on Fri 29th Mar 2013 14:24 in reply to "RE: Hyperbole"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Red Hat products can't ship ECDSA or MP3 or H.264 because of patents, which makes things like embedded or security much more likely to use another distribution, or another OS entirely.


Yes they can ship those things they just have to pay for them like any other company. If the products they are shipping are operating at such a marginal cost/price ratio that they cannot afford the license fees then the problem is in their business not in the IP system. And anyway Red Hat and it's products are marginal and tiny players in the tech markets and not because they are limited by IP but because their products are low volume marginal products. The limitations of Red Hat as a business and the imitations of the tech they sell has nothing to do with IP. Using Red Hat as an example does not support the thesis that the tech industry is in any way significantly impacted by IP litigation because with or without IP litigation and restrictions Red Hat would remain a small bit player.

Reply Parent Score: -1