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97 comments

Please sue (2, Funny)

Compaqt (1758360) | about 2 years ago | (#41326313)

you know who.

Pretty please?

Re:Please sue (5, Funny)

MatrixCubed (583402) | about 2 years ago | (#41326339)

Hey Mack, here's a round of appleause for being cryptic.

Re:Please sue (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326379)

this reminds me of the time my granny janice smith helped me find steve a job. she really loved to help my uncle time learn how to cook.

Re:Please sue (5, Funny)

MatrixCubed (583402) | about 2 years ago | (#41326425)

iHear you, bro.

I'm in MENSA. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41332665)

And cryptic comments are really easy for me! I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but after four comments I think it is OK! "Google"! Did everyone get it, like I did? If not, don't fret. We all have different gifts!

But "iHear" seems like "iPhone", and *Apple* (not Google) makes the iPhone. So, I'm not sure MatrixCubed is smart enough for MENSA. But maybe he can join the "Friends of MENSA" group, which accepts anyone (for an annual fee) who doesn't meet the MENSA standard for intelligence.

I'm surprised that people on Slashdot would even joke about suing Google. I would think Slashdot members would prefer suing Apple. :-)

Re:Please sue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41327963)

didn't she also help your uncle jack off a horse?

Re:Please sue (1)

grcumb (781340) | about 2 years ago | (#41331775)

this reminds me of the time my granny janice smith helped me find steve a job. she really loved to help my uncle time learn how to cook.

I heard it Woz more than one. Steve's Jobs, wasn't it, Mac? (Don't say she was Lion....)

Re:Please sue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326625)

... round of applause ...

I see what you did there!

Re:Please sue (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#41326387)

you know who.

That could actually be a good way of getting rid of them, unless they have Harry Potter as a board member.

Re:Please sue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326429)

If you're referring to Apple no it wouldn't. The licensing costs wouldn't even be 1/2 of 1% of their cash on hand.

Re:Please sue (1)

noahwh (1545231) | about 2 years ago | (#41327657)

The villain Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter series is often referred to as 'you know who' by characters who are afraid to speak his name aloud.

Re:Please sue (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41329035)

I prefer "HWMNBN" as short hand for "he who must not be named."

Re:Please sue (2)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#41331099)

Have you seen the giant pile of money trucks Cook is sitting on? If this company turned out to be a threat he could just buy the damned company and add their patents to their already scary patent warchest, or keep them a separate company and simply point them at Apple's rivals.

You see that is the problem when it comes to these companies becoming supermegacorps, there really isn't any way for them to truly lose, they can buy their way out of damned near anything. Hell look at MSFT, Ballmer makes Uncle Fester look like a genius and even a decade of him flushing money for one harebrained scheme after another hasn't even made a dent. He could probably go another 20 years shooting his company in the face before their cash flow actually becomes a problem, scary but true, and Cook has a hell of a lot more $$$ to burn than Ballmer.

Re:Please sue (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326509)

Spending time on Slashdot? Why not try to update your pathetic "homepage"?

They did sue Apple. Apple settled (3, Informative)

pavon (30274) | about 2 years ago | (#41326917)

Most people responding to you have assumed you are referring to Apple. If that is the case, then you are late. Eolas already sued Apple back in October 2009 [allthingsd.com] , and they settled August 2011 [law360.com] .

Re:They did sue Apple. Apple settled (1)

Creepy (93888) | about 2 years ago | (#41327767)

Which surprised me - you could say hypercard sent to a remote display is MUCH prior art.

Re:They did sue Apple. Apple settled (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 2 years ago | (#41329367)

Which surprised me - you could say hypercard sent to a remote display is MUCH prior art.

And Disney... they worked on Squeak (in 1993, but the technology belonged to others before them) which had the same capabilities... and any patents would have expired long ago.

I claim prior art (4, Funny)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 years ago | (#41326367)

I claim prior art to the use of the word delcared.

All your words are belong to me.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

virgnarus (1949790) | about 2 years ago | (#41326877)

Won't get quite as much money patent trolling a misspelled word, but good luck with that!

Re:I claim prior art (2)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 years ago | (#41326979)

Actually, the article post is misleading in the title. The primary patent holder is in fact UCLA. You'd be surprised how many patents universities hold and then license.

Sometimes, having the primary patent holder be a public university means that nobody gets to engage in patent wars, as public universities have no incentive to do things that are not in the public good like that. Thus disarming Facebook, Disney, and Wal-Mart (china) from killing off their competitors.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#41327149)

Actually, the article post is misleading in the title. The primary patent holder is in fact UCLA.

That's UCLA as in University of California, Los Angeles, right?

Isn't UCLA a state school?

Isn't everything generated by the state considered Public Domain?

Either I'm way off base, or something smell fishy in Denmark...

Re:I claim prior art (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41327253)

Actually, the primary patent holder is The Regents of the University of California. And the "inventing" occurred at UC San Francisco, not UCLA.

The UC is a public university, but not all of the funding comes from public sources. Even research that is the result of public funding is not automatically in the public domain.

From what I understand in this case and in previous matters, the Regents are letting Eolas use UC as a plaintiff (as the patent holder) with out UC being actively involved in the lawsuits.

Re:I claim prior art (-1, Troll)

operagost (62405) | about 2 years ago | (#41327363)

Why not? They were already using public funds to help train advocates for illegal immigration [foxnews.com] .

Re:I claim prior art (2)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 years ago | (#41328043)

Why not? They were already using public funds to help train advocates for illegal immigration [foxnews.com] .

Quoting a claim from Faux News is never a sign of academic rigor.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

operagost (62405) | about 2 years ago | (#41456029)

Summarily dismissing a claim solely due to its origin is never a sign of logic.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 years ago | (#41456483)

Do you ever watch SNL?

Cause they have lots of fun rolling credits when they do skits of Faux News with how much of their Facts are NOT facts.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41327593)

You're off base. Public universities holding patents is nothing even remotely new. Welcome to the results of the Bayh-Dole Act passed in 1980.

Re:I claim prior art (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#41327879)

You're off base. Public universities holding patents is nothing even remotely new. Welcome to the results of the Bayh-Dole Act passed in 1980.

From reading the Wikipedia entry for the Bayh-Dole Act, it seems that, unless Eolas is acting on behalf of UCLA, they have no right to claim patent rights (assuming these patents really are owned by UCLA).

Of course, IANA Patent Attorney, so I readily admit I really don't know how this crap works.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41328195)

They are an excusive licensee of the patents. That's how they have standing.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41328223)

Forgot to add, being an 'exclusive licensee' doesn't mean you're the only licensee. See 'WiAV Solutions v. Motorola.'.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#41328601)

Forgot to add, being an 'exclusive licensee' doesn't mean you're the only licensee. See 'WiAV Solutions v. Motorola.'.

...

Thanks for the info, but at this point I've gotta say 'fuck it, not worth the brainpower...'

U.S. states and intellectual property (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | about 2 years ago | (#41328363)

Isn't everything generated by the state considered Public Domain?

AFAIK, with regard to most federal IP law, U.S. states are no different than private entities. The federal government is a different story, though.

Re:I claim prior art (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41329057)

Isn't UCLA a state school?
Isn't everything generated by the state considered Public Domain?

You are confusing "a state" with "The State".

Re:I claim prior art (2)

jameshofo (1454841) | about 2 years ago | (#41328075)

Can we wait until they finish suing Facebook before we declare prior art? Just this once

Re:I claim prior art (2)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | about 2 years ago | (#41328651)

No. I'm still Mayor of Kaslo BC on Friendster.

So we can't wait.

Oh look! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326369)

Anothe fine sample of U$A fail patent/legal system.

only outcome (4, Insightful)

Nyder (754090) | about 2 years ago | (#41326383)

is that lawyers are getting paid.

Re:only outcome (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41328989)

Why do you rob banks? Because thats where the money is.

Lobbying (4, Interesting)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | about 2 years ago | (#41326451)

Why do nerds raise $100ks on kickstarter for computer games, but not the equivalent to lobby government to repeal stupid patent laws?

It would have a much more positive effect on software development in the long run, you know...

Re:Lobbying (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326483)

Because it would take billions of dollars to outbid the current lobyists?

Re:Lobbying (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326897)

It would also help to have a coherent narrative about why it needs to be fixed and exactly how to go about it. Almost every single user on here knows intuitively and also based on evidence that "something should be done". Some few of us might even agree on what must be done. However getting more than a few folks to agree on what to do to fix the problem - enough to actually sway the day - we'd need some plan that had the support of a lot of folks. I don't see that today. I see a bunch of "we should do" and nothing that is truly a coherent message. Let's fix it. I'm not smart enough to do it myself. Come up with a great plan and I can help implement it though.

Re:Lobbying (1)

mug funky (910186) | about 2 years ago | (#41331401)

the best an Anon can do is send pizzas and black faxes...

Re:Lobbying (5, Insightful)

MatrixCubed (583402) | about 2 years ago | (#41326503)

Wikipedia:

"Lobbying (USA): Lobbying in the United States describes paid activity in which special interests hire well-connected professional advocates, often lawyers, to argue for specific legislation in decision-making bodies such as the United States Congress."

"Bribery: Bribery is an act of implying money or gift giving that alters the behavior of the recipient."

Feeding a broken machine the very stuff that makes it broken doesn't make its problems go away.

Re:Lobbying (2)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | about 2 years ago | (#41327173)

Well, in lobbying, you are bribing the lawyers to do something for you, so it releases you from liability. Besides, it's not like they are giving them money directly, only campaign fund contributions, which may or may not be go to their slush fund, so they can keep making money themselves. Think of it as onion routing your bribe.

Re:Lobbying (1)

EuclideanSilence (1968630) | about 2 years ago | (#41338043)

Going further off topic...

Wikipedia:

"Bribery: Bribery is an act of implying money or gift giving that alters the behavior of the recipient."

How is this marked +5 insightful? Wikipedia is blatantly wrong here. If this were a correct definition of bribery, then buying groceries would be bribery.

Bribery is the offering of value in order to persuade someone to do something illegal, or something that is considered should be illegal, or something against a policy such as a workplace policy. Giving a cashier money so you can leave with groceries isn't bribery because no one thinks buying groceries should be illegal. Giving a cop money to get you out of a speeding ticket is bribery, because a police officers job is to give out tickets.

Giving congressmen money in order to vote a certain way might be considered bribery because you can say "well they aren't voting their conscience." But that ignores the fact that people will support congressmen because the congressman voted in a way the contributor agreed with. Example:
Financing a congressman who supports SOPA? People called that bribery.
Financing a congressman who was against SOPA? That was considered respectable.

If you want to start with fixing campaign financing, start here:
http://www.fec.gov/pages/brochures/contriblimits.shtml [fec.gov]
Individuals are allowed to give $2,500 per election to a candidate. But they are allowed to give $30,800 to a political party every year. And political parties are allowed to give $5,000 to candidates per election. Political parties have made it illegal for anyone to financially compete with them. You want to give $5,000 to a candidate that you like? Well to hell with you, you have to give it to the Republican Campaign Corporation or the Democratic Campaign Corporation and hope that they give it to who you like.

Lobbyists aren't the problem, they are the solution. I'd rather see a list of which lobbyists support someone on a ballot than simply an R or D after a candidate's name. We have to take away the financial immunity that the major parties have given themselves.

Re:Lobbying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326513)

Perhaps you should start a kickstarter

Need....more...money.... (5, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 2 years ago | (#41326531)

The reason we don't raise $100,000s to repeal foolish laws is because that's somewhere in the neighborhood of three to five orders of magnitude too low two actually have an impact on the way IP law is written in the US.

There are ~470 members of congress, all of which need to fund multi-million dollar campaigns every 2 years, and we're looking at probably a 10 year time horizon to enact real, meaningful change. At the same time, there are multiple Billion dollar a year industries which reply on patents and copyrights to protect their business model and cash flow.

$100,000 is like pissing into a hurricane.

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | about 2 years ago | (#41326571)

Don't people have regular incomes? Anyway, you mostly need the attention of the guys at the top, no? Buy the ear of the people who matter. Sponsor the presidential campaigns, &c.

It's worked in the EU, kinda. Government is cheap. And some of them would enjoy the attention they get from going against the grain - if they'd just wanted money, they'd have stayed in business.

Re:Need....more...money.... (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 2 years ago | (#41326661)

Don't people have regular incomes? Anyway, you mostly need the attention of the guys at the top, no? Buy the ear of the people who matter.

Right.

The problem is, those ears are already bought and paid for by groups with far, far more resources than all of geekdom combined.

Money isn't everything, you know. There's also free stuff/food/hookers/etc., job offers, cushy positions as congressional lobbyists...

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326739)

Fortunately in the EU case the cheap ones were the patent lobby offering as bribes ice creams.
Pro-patent lobby in sticky situation over ice-cream offer [zdnet.com]

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

Lithdren (605362) | about 2 years ago | (#41326987)

You're right! People do have regular incomes! Of course, the answer is so simple!

First, setup an organization that takes payments from its members, small 'donations', but its important we keep who and how much a secret as we dont want to altert those who wish to oversee what we're up to. Now, take this money and hire some influence in the DC area, I figure some old lawyer friends or something should work...err...anyway these people could argue... on behalf of the donators to have the laws changed as th....

Wait a second.

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

tgd (2822) | about 2 years ago | (#41326807)

IP law isn't the problem, funding of the patent office is. The problem with junk patents isn't the patent system, but the load and backlog the patent examiners have.

There's two solutions -- vastly increase the cost of patents, shutting out individual investors, or fund it to the tune of an order of magnitude more money from taxes.

Re:Need....more...money.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41330005)

Unfortunately, there are lots of problems with patent law. As a class in society, legal professionals have a vested interest in having a legal system that others (i.e. non-legal professionals) can not understand, because it creates long-term business for their profession. We end up with lots of complex, confusing, even contradictory laws as a result, and then we end up with lots of complex, confusing, and contradictory precedents that, in the guise of fixing things, usually end up making even more of a mess of the legal system.

"Fixing" the patent office will do zero to address the crippling effect that this ethical conflict of interest has on our legal system. Greatly limiting the power and scope of government is probably the only practical way to deal with this.

Something else to think about: throwing money at a bureaucracy is rarely a good way to solve complex problems, something governments in the USA at all levels seem to have enormous trouble figuring out. Bureaucracies tend to have their own ethical conflicts of interest that get in the way of efficient performance ...

In addition, in today's complex world, it is very hard to know when an idea is really new and worthy of protection. It is basically impossible for anyone to keep up with all potentially relevant literature for most modern technical fields: those who claim otherwise are deluding themselves.
Which means giving more time to the patent examiners isn't necessarily going to help.

It's also an open question as to whether or not the patent examiners would be competent to make such decisions: people who only read about technical stuff and don't do it -- i.e. the majority of patent examiners -- tend to have serious deficiencies in their knowledge and their ability to assess ideas. Having current real world experience in a technical field makes a huge difference in the intellectual abilities of individuals to think about ideas related to that field. Engineering degrees do not make one an engineer: they only provide a foundation for becoming one.

Also, the legal professionals in the USA have chosen to implement protection of ideas using the medium of contract law. This poses problems in and of itself. Lots of bad stuff that happens in the legal system goes on in or as a result of contract-related matters.

Perhaps you might wish to read some of the position papers done by the League for Programming Freedom?

Re:Need....more...money.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326937)

There are ~470 members of congress, all of which need to fund multi-million dollar campaigns every 2 years, and we're looking at probably a 10 year time horizon to enact real, meaningful change. At the same time, there are multiple Billion dollar a year industries which reply on patents and copyrights to protect their business model and cash flow.

Sounds like we should go back and re-read the constitution. There has to be one representative per 30,000 people (minimum). With 10,000 representatives, it's a lot harder to bribe them all or even a few (if you gave half $1M, that's $5B in lobbying...).

Sure there are practical problems, but having the pool spread out would help with campaign finance reform...

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | about 2 years ago | (#41327297)

There has to be one representative per 30,000 people (minimum).

No. The text is The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at Least one Representative.... It's saying that there any one representative cannot represent less than 30,000 people. It's the opposite of what you're thinking. If you were correct there would be over 100K representatives.

Re:Need....more...money.... (1)

operagost (62405) | about 2 years ago | (#41327415)

Not to mention that there are not "~470 members of Congress", but exactly 535, and only the 435 members of the House of Reps have two year terms. For senators, it's six.

Re:Lobbying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326567)

Nice try Mr. Congressman...

Re:Lobbying (1)

gutnor (872759) | about 2 years ago | (#41326603)

Lobbying is not only about one-off money - you don't just send money to a few congressmen and they are bought. It is more subtle than that. You need to have people dedicated, long term plan/strategies, contact with people of influence and most importantly, revolving doors.

Money is gas but you need an engine to use it with.

Not necessarily... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41329039)

You can just huff the gas.

Re:Lobbying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326681)

Politics is a subscription-based service.

Re:Lobbying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41327895)

Because lobbyists don't make games.

Makes me wish (3)

JWW (79176) | about 2 years ago | (#41326527)

I feel awful that I have to say this, but it makes me wish that Tim Berners-Lee would have taken out a defensive patent on the web.

Then he could slam ELOAS for all the money they have.

Or to put it more bluntly. I had it with these mother#$%@$ patent trolls on this mother%@$()$ internet!!

Re:Makes me wish (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326873)

I have had it with these monkey-fighting patent trolls on this monday to friday internet!!

Oh, and mod parent up.

Re:Makes me wish (3, Informative)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about 2 years ago | (#41327803)

I feel awful that I have to say this, but it makes me wish that Tim Berners-Lee would have taken out a defensive patent on the web.

Nope. The thing is, Eolas have no products and produce nothing, so they cannot be sued for patent infringement. Even if others have patents on braodly the same kind of thing.

Re:Makes me wish (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41331121)

No, but you can nuisance sue them for talking too loud, for having ugly children, for having dogs with disagreeable dog odor, in short anything you like. And if a couple million Shashdotters filed such lawsuits, it would bring said assholes to their knees. Let the scum of the earth know that a couple million people can real mess up their day. The masses are tired of the parasites who bleed us dry and its time for a little pesticide.

Browser Patents (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41326599)

How can a patent for web browser functions affect companies which only serve the content? They aren't providing the technology to interpret the content (except for mobile phone apps which are a pretty small piece of the pie).

Re:Browser Patents (2)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | about 2 years ago | (#41327313)

Because they can pay. What is Mozilla or Opera going to pay?

Deep pockets ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41326623)

Wow, if I was going to start suing people, I don't know that I'd go for three huge corporations with billions of dollars -- they could just bury you in lawyers.

Unfortunately, TFA is a little thin on the actual patents. Though it seems likely to be yet another set of ones which were probably fairly obvious even in the early days of the web. Interesting that two of them have been invalidated.

Re:Deep pockets ... (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41326695)

Why? They sued and got Microsoft to settle back in 2007. They also got companies like TI, JP Morgan Chase and Oracle to also license their patents. They've also still have outstaninding lawsuits against bigger companies. Facebook and Disney are small potatoes versus a Microsoft or Apple that they've already sued.

Re:Deep pockets ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41327169)

Facebook and Disney are small potatoes versus a Microsoft or Apple that they've already sued.

All valid points. But in the case of Disney, I've always felt their lawyers were much more ... er ... aggressive for this kind of thing.

Re:Deep pockets ... (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41327389)

Never heard of Apple or Oracle have you? Both setttled with Eolas.

Re:Deep pockets ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 years ago | (#41327613)

Never heard of Apple or Oracle have you?

Why, no -- who are they? Do they make potato chips or anything I'd have heard of? A TV show maybe? ;-)

The reality is, someone else settling doesn't establish any form of legal precedent. It just means they wanted it to go away.

It really doesn't preclude someone else saying "fuck it, see you in court". And, if two of the four patents have been invalidated by a jury since then, one wonders what the second round might look like. I also have no idea of the content of the other two patents or how defensible they might be. Something about hyperlinking is all TFA said.

Some people paid SCO their $699 "licensing fee" too. But saying "these guys settled, you should too" doesn't have any real legal weight. People might weigh their options and decide it's worth fighting. Then again, they might decide it's not worth it. Or they could decide these guys have a legally strong case.

Until there's a real legal precedent -- which, people might avoid arriving at if the judgement would be even higher -- we really don't know.

Re:Deep pockets ... (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41327083)

Adding to my previous comment, a win in court or a settlement with a big firm (like they did with Microsoft) also makes it more likely others will follow suit (which also happened in this case). Then this means you can move on to smaller and even more vulnerable targets.

Settlements (1)

jimjag (68949) | about 2 years ago | (#41326651)

What these trolls depend upon is a growing list of high-profile companies who settle these lawsuits. If you are a large company, even a settlement of $100k is cheaper than the work involved in actually "fighting" the suit, and so companies pay these "nuisance lawsuits" while making sure that whatever agreement they sign makes it clear that settlement doesn't imply that they *believe* the suit (or patent) has merit.

Which is fine for the troll... they get $$ plus are able to say "Look at all these big companies who paid. If they paid us, you can bet you're going to have to", misleading people into thinking that the settlements somehow provide some measure of "validity" to their claims.

They need the big splash settlements to obtain the big payouts: lots of settlements by smaller companies.

Hah (2)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#41326659)

When Eolas won the patent case against Microsoft many years ago, lots of people around here were pumping their fist in the air, happy that Microsoft had finally gotten a black-eye over their browser. I remember posting something to the effect of: "You don't actually want Eolas to win this one. If they win against Microsoft, they can win against anybody."

Today I think Slashdotters would agree with me. It's a nice change.

Re:Hah (2)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41326743)

They also got other big corps to settle like Oracle, JP Morgan Chase, etc. It's no different to the current mobile patent war where people who proclaim to hate software patents or patents in general cheer when the side they hate loses. Even when it means that the very software patents they claim to dislike only gain further legitimacy in the courts. Fanboism trumps logic every time.

Re:Hah (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41327543)

Its funny to me, because I live in a country where all software patents are invalid.

Re:Hah (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 2 years ago | (#41328463)

When Eolas won the patent case against Microsoft many years ago, lots of people around here were pumping their fist in the air, happy that Microsoft had finally gotten a black-eye over their browser.

Wasn't that because Eolas specifically promised to not sue Mozilla or any other open source browser?

Re:Hah (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#41328641)

Wasn't that because Eolas specifically promised to not sue Mozilla or any other open source browser?

Yep, which is a pretty weak reason to celebrate. If Eolas has the power, there's nothing preventing any other company from gaining that power, too.

This is why it's a bad idea to blind-rage against any company.

Re:Hah (1)

dkf (304284) | about 2 years ago | (#41332379)

Yep, which is a pretty weak reason to celebrate. If Eolas has the power, there's nothing preventing any other company from gaining that power, too.

Nothing in law anyway. They'd still have to actually have something that they can sue over or the court will throw it out immediately.

This is why it's a bad idea to blind-rage against any company.

Oh, there are a few that it's worth saving the ire for, ones that have a history of killing employees, customers and the general public through their lax safety controls or their corrupt entanglements with crooked governments. Let's save the rage for where it's actually justified.

Re:Hah (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#41336825)

Oh, there are a few that it's worth saving the ire for, ones that have a history of killing employees, customers and the general public through their lax safety controls or their corrupt entanglements with crooked governments. Let's save the rage for where it's actually justified.

Is there a company we routinely bitch about here on Slashdot that fits this bill?

Shouldn't there be a consequence (4, Interesting)

sjames (1099) | about 2 years ago | (#41326755)

They are suing over 4 patents, two of which have already been ruled invalid. Shouldn't they suffer a significant penalty for knowingly suing over an invalid patent?

It's not _really_ a live suit (5, Informative)

Theaetetus (590071) | about 2 years ago | (#41327583)

They are suing over 4 patents, two of which have already been ruled invalid. Shouldn't they suffer a significant penalty for knowingly suing over an invalid patent?

I was curious about that, too, so I just looked up the filing documents on PACER. The patents were declared invalid in the Eolas v. Google et al. trial, and Eolas has appealed that decision to the Federal Circuit (which they're allowed to do). This suit was filed with a request to stay all deadlines, pending the outcome of the Appeal in the Google suit.

Basically, this reserves Eolas' filing date for the suit, which may be important for statute of limitations issues or other issues, but it's going to sit there with no requirement for Facebook or anyone else to even respond until the other suit is done. If the Federal Circuit reverses the jury decision and finds the patents valid, then this one can go ahead, and they haven't sued over an invalid patent. If the Federal Circuit affirms the jury decision, then they can amend the complaint to remove the two invalid patents. Either way, Facebook et al don't have to even reply for a year or two.

Re:It's not _really_ a live suit (1)

sjames (1099) | about 2 years ago | (#41327969)

That explains it.

Can we sue the Patent Office (2)

bobthesungeek76036 (2697689) | about 2 years ago | (#41326955)

for issuing such insane patents it the first place?

Re:Can we sue the Patent Office (2)

DragonWriter (970822) | about 2 years ago | (#41328413)

You can sue just about anyone for just about anything.

Whether you can win such a lawsuit -- rather than losing and being ordered to pay the other guys costs on top of it -- is a different story.

does wal mart still fight every lawsuit? (2)

alen (225700) | about 2 years ago | (#41327055)

i read that years ago that wal mart fights every lawsuit, no matter how minor

in this case, i hope so

I can't find it in TFA (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about 2 years ago | (#41327525)

What are the patent numbers?
I've been clicking on links since the mid-90's. Surely patents around that are due to expire some time soon.

Re:I can't find it in TFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41327703)

Wouldn't gopher links or even apple's old hypercard act as prior art?

Re:I can't find it in TFA (1)

kipling (24579) | about 2 years ago | (#41328833)

Here is a good place to start: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eolas [wikipedia.org] .
It refers to #5838906 and #7599985

If you don't vote Libertarian you ASKED FOR THIS!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41328475)

The patent laws are a mess and since the Republicrats and Democans have the big businesses of every industry in their pockets they will never reform any patent laws, only make them more business friendly. Anyone who votes Republicrat or Democan, shut up and sit on the sideline. Both major parties are for corporate wealth and will use legislation to back said corporate wealth, especially to eliminate all civil liberties they don't agree with. You continually ask for an intrusive, activist government that always sides with the corporation. YOU ASKED FOR THIS!!

--
A vote against a Libertarian candidate is
a vote to abolish the constitution itself.

Re:If you don't vote Libertarian you ASKED FOR THI (2)

geminidomino (614729) | about 2 years ago | (#41329989)

I know I probably shouldn't feed the political trolls, but... Are you shitting me. I doubt anyone with two neurons to not-rub-together could argue that the Rs and Ds have fucked things up to a point that they're nearly beyond redemption.

And your "solution" to this is to vote for the Randroid, "let the corps do whatever they want", "slavery is legal if it's in the contract" Libertarians? Are you HIGH?

Re:If you don't vote Libertarian you ASKED FOR THI (1)

EuclideanSilence (1968630) | about 2 years ago | (#41343665)

He's not high, but you are a liar.

No libertarian is saying that "corporations can do whatever they want." But feel free to keep lying about this. Oh I'm sorry, it was just an exaggeration, right? Cowards hide behind exaggerations when they can't make real arguments.

Re:If you don't vote Libertarian you ASKED FOR THI (1)

geminidomino (614729) | about 2 years ago | (#41347755)

Cowards hide behind ad hominem attacks when they can't make real arguments.

Fixed that for you, troll.

Patents Don't Get Invalidated (1)

Compulawyer (318018) | about 2 years ago | (#41329993)

Individual claims in each patent get invalidated. It is quite possible (and typical) for a patent to have some valid claims and some invalid claims. Typically this happens when broader claims are invalidated by prior art that was not located during examination.

Hoisted on their own petard... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41330841)

Some years back, Slashdotters helped end the career of a spammer. Million of people signed the offending gentleman up for junk mail. The idiot started receiving multiple truckloads of junk mail. The cost of managing tons of garbage daily as I say, ended his career as a spammer.

There must be a way for Slashdotters to file nuisance lawsuits against patent trolls, nothing that would stand up to serious scrutiny mind you, just something that would result in about 5 million separate cases these scumbags would have to deal with individually. Figure that should piss a couple centuries of their time away.

Them that live by the sword should certainly die by it...

I think it might be better (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41330847)

To let the mafia run everything.
These turds would have a bullet in the head and we would not have to pay through our nose for shit like internet service.

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