Patent Trolls Going After Media Companies; Will That Lead To Real Reform?

from the ink-by-the-bit-barrel dept

The folks at M-CAM have noticed a new trend in patent trolling: trolls are starting to target media companies with patent lawsuits, rather than just tech companies. The M-CAM report, by the way, is done almost entirely in verse, which is quite entertaining. Here's just the very beginning:
Have you seen a troll yet this year?
Speckled, short, inciting fear?
We’ve heard them described as non-practicing entities
But we know “patent troll” is their proper identity.

Technology, it seems, is their favorite sector
The bones they pick, like Hannibal Lecter.
Big tech has had to make sacrifice
Of legal settlements at extravagant price.

The trolls have grown fat from the tolls they’ve collected
They proclaim, “Innovation – it must be protected!”
Though to make or create, they have no intention
Only hopes to profit off other’s creations.
And now they look for new bridges to block
Scouting for more victims whose stocks they can shock.
Of course, while media companies aren't quite as used to dealing with patent lawsuits, and also don't have patent portfolios of their own should they be sued by practicing entities, the one thing they do have is the ability to sway public opinion. It will be interesting to see, as this keeps up, if it backfires on the trolling firms by simply calling more and more attention to some of their practices.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:00am

    Change:

    "We’ve heard them described as non-practicing entities
    But we know “patent troll” is their proper identity."

    to

    "They often describe themselves as a non-practicing entity
    But we know “patent troll” is their proper identity."

    It rhymes better.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    Richard (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:16am

    Re:

    But they generally don't admit to being "non-practising".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:32am

    Now media companies will have to spend billions to have patents too.

    Oh the irony, imagine what SOPA will do to them.
    I can see Viacom on the receiving end of an injunction :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    icon
    WysiWyg (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:40am

    One can dream...

    Perhaps the "MAFIAA" can do something right for a change. Wouldn't it be just the most awesome irony if they used their surprisingly huge lobbying powers to fix the patent-system?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    icon
    Steve R. (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:42am

    Excellent Question

    Media companies, such as the New York Times, have tended too support "stong" copyright. Furthermore, the issue of so-called "intellectual property" has not really surfaced, in the papers, as a topic worth following. Maybe the times are a changing.

    TechDirt has recently referenced the New York Times as taking a stand against ever stronger protections for so-called "intellectual property". "NY Times & LA Times Both Come Out Against SOPA & PIPA". So, maybe, the media has finally become sensitized to the fact that the protection of so-called "intellectual property" has gone too far and is a threat to our civil liberties and the rule-of-law.

    One can only hope that media exposure will lead to others realizing that the pendulum has swung to far and that this realization would translate into reform. However, as I previously wrote; the future appears bleak since both the current Administration and the Republicans running for President support "strong" protection for so-called "intellectual property".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    icon
    DannyB (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:49am

    Re:

    We've heard them called non practicing entity,
    But "patent troll" is their proper identity.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    icon
    DannyB (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:50am

    Re:

    Trolls grown fat from tolls collected,
    They proclaim, "Innovation - must be protected!"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    icon
    DannyB (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:52am

    Re:

    To make or create, they have no intention.
    Just hope to profit from others' invention.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:57am

    Don't count on it, the media is full of shameless hypocrites, and since big media groups have largely supported SOPA they'll probably continue to support it even after the tables are turned against them.

    Plus the media doesn't tend to like publicly attacking their opponents, look at how most media companies pretend that Fox News is a legitimate news organization while Fox News returns the favor by bashing every other news organization as dangerous supporters of Obama.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    icon
    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 6:16am

    Re:

    Plus the media doesn't tend to like publicly attacking their opponents, look at how most media companies pretend that Fox News is a legitimate news organization while Fox News returns the favor by bashing every other news organization as dangerous supporters of Obama.

    So who is the honest one here? Lesson 1 - None of them!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    icon
    Marcus Carab (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 6:50am

    Re:

    It rhymes better.

    ...but it has no metre.

    Quit correcting an innocent poem folks! Who d'ya'all think you are, Charles Babbage?

    :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 6:53am

    Bloody Brilliant !!!!

    I really wish I had thought of this, target the media companies with patent suits, and continue to until they fail. It is simple, it is financially self sustaining, all it requires is an office in bum frak texas and a little time.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 7:07am

    Whoa, this thread could result in some epic troll on troll action.
    I'm betting $1 that the Pro-IP Trolls beat the Pro-BigMedia trolls, the IP trolls seem more coherent most of the time....
    Although ... some of the Pro-BigMedia trolls have an uncanny ability to just shove their fingers in their ears and shout "lalala" whenever confronted with something they disagree with, arguably not the best form of defense but hmm... Nah, my bet is still on the IP Trolls.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    icon
    weneedhelp (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 10:16am

    My company has had to hire three IP liers to fend off patent trolls over the last 6 months. 3) 100,000+ saliries to fight trolls. Would be nice to have that 300,000 for other projects.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Steph, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 11:26am

    What will lead to real reform is people fighting these trolls to the death at every lawsuit.

    Evil people understand three things:

    Lawyers, guns, and money.

    Targets need two out of the three to hire better ones and defeat the trolls in their own home: the courtroom. Unless, of course, you're in TX in which case the third item is also legally acceptable.

    KIDDING.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 1st, 2011 @ 12:15pm

    poetry 101

    y'all suck at poetic meter. How about this:

    While often described as non-practicing entities,
    "patent troll" labels their proper identity.

    I'd send this whole poem back for a do-over.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    icon
    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Dec 1st, 2011 @ 5:37pm

    Re: poetry 101

    Nobody cares.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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