patent infringmentGeneral Forums/Digital Discussion/patent infringment
Its a scary world out there, when people own patents but only enforce them when you start to make money.Objection. Assumes facts not in evidence. They cannot sue patent infringers, that they do not know about, thus it stands to reason that only the most obvious infringers get caught.
How do we find out if we are breaking patents before the big day?[/block]Get a patent lawyer, and hope for the best.This isn't technically true. There is tons of code that was written prior to Software patents existing (or becoming standard practice).
[quote]Any program that has more than a paragraph of source code is bound to violate at least a dozen patents
Software patents are a VERY bad idea, and massive patent reform is badly needed.This on the other hand is absolutely true.
I hate these guys, and the ways they exploit the legal system solely as a means of profit.Which guys? The guys over at Lodsys who own the patent and are entitled to licensing fees if they so choose, or the guys over at Apple, who knew it was necessary to get a license (hint: The reason they're not being sued, is because they already have one), but didn't tell any of their developers?
My other thought is that developers could band together to create a fund to pay licensing to Lodsys as a group.What would be their incentive? They can get a much better deal from individual licensees (and taking infringers to court) than they could ever get from a collective bargaining deal.
Software patents based ONLY on an idea should be automatically banned.They usually are, or at least, they rarely stand up in court. The Lodsys patent doesn't simply read "If you buy something via a bit of software, you need to pay us, LOL!". It's actually a number of very specific patents, pertaining to a very specific solution. You should also know that Lodsys LLC isn't a mega company with deep pockets, who's abusing the system, and anyone claiming so is eschewing the facts, and being deliberately misleading (or arguing from ignorance, whichever you think is worst). Lodsys LLC is simply the legal entity of inventor Dan Abelow. Lodsys is the "independent inventor" and all the big boys are screwing him over, because they have all the money in the world. So you can all drop your righteous anger at them, as this is actually one of the few cases where patent law is working as intended (that is protecting the inventor from having his invention exploited by large corporations).
Yes it's unfortunate that a few developers get caught in the crossfire, but to be honest, Roxio has made over 24 million USD on Angry Birds (the game alone, not counting the merchandise which is probably triple that), they can probably afford to pay a license to the guy who made it possible for them to become rich. If the shoe was on the other foot, and Lodsys LLC where selling knock-off Angry Birds plushies, would people still side with the party willfully breaking the law? I think not.