I think you are confused about what can be patented or not. From the USPTO site...
“...new and useful process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof, may obtain a patent,”
What they claim these patents (I believe there are four) cover is the process of network scanning--not the actual equipment. So yes, there really are patents involved. And yes, you can infringe on a process patent using your own equipment that you purchased. Whether or not these patents would pass the obviousness test, and can be interpreted the way these trolls claim is irrelevant until someone actually takes them to court. Which will probably not happen because they are avoiding shaking down any company large enough to have a well funded legal team and enough employees that the cost of fighting could be justified as opposed to paying the settlement.
i would love to be taken to court to be sued, cos i would be suing them back for a few million and not only would i almost be guaranteed to win
Doesn't work that way, the best that you could hope for is to get the patent invalidated. You can't sue for damages (not even attorney's fees), because these trolls would use the defense--"A good faith belief in the validity of their patents", which gets them off the hook and might make you liable for their attorney's fees (you're the one maliciously suing, not them). Not that it would get that far. These trolls do not want to have these patents challenged in court, so the second someone with the wherewithal to take this to court stands up to them, they will use the last defense of any patent troll worth his salt and file for dismissal without prejudice but would except a dismissal with prejudice if they had to. And you're now sitting with a big fat pile of attorney's fees for your troubles, and they can continue their shakedown operation on someone else.
Yes, a business can infringe on a patent like this. They are using the patent on the process of automated scanning+e-mailing of documents to shake down businesses--not the use of a specific device. So a business could be held liable, but an individual doing this at home most likely would not be.
Of course this patent is complete shit and so obvious that it would probably get thrown out, which is the reason they aren't suing the manufacturers of these scanners--they don't want to have to go to court against someone with a well funded legal team. This is why it looks like they are targeting smaller businesses and giving the ones that complain the advice to talk to a patent attorney. That advice would probably be something along the lines of--"You could probably win, but it might take a million plus dollars to do it. It's better to just give them the $100,000 they want so they'll go away".
Hmmm...If they don't get their way and can't block a service that allows people to watch their shows with the ads intact (what gets them paid), they'll stop broadcasting OTA and send everyone to the pirate sites (which doesn't get them paid).
Most of us here believe in the original stated purpose of copyright in the US constitution--the benefit of the society granting it. Seeing as copyright law as it exists today provides no discernible benefit to society (it only benefits those that hold the copyright), it should be abolished or replaced with something that does.
He didn't 'give it away and pray', he 'gave it away, and worked his ass of to give people a reason to pay'--pretty big difference there. And sure enough--as we talk about here all the time, his business model worked. I think this is something you seem to forget--the hard work part, all you record label shills seem to want is a 'magic bullet' model that makes the labels massive amounts of money for very little work.
Re: Did you stay up all night writing these fall-back pieces?
BUT MAINLY, as we've written several (hundred) times: the industry CANNOT survive if their business model goes unchanged.
Over 80% of an album's production cost (writing, recording, mastering, and advertising) is going to the 10 songs that no one really wants (if you split it up into strict percentages). How can an industry hope to survive with this kind of inefficiency built into their business model? Why should we care if an inefficient industry fails? This happens all the time, and is an indicator of a healthy market. And, really it's not the industry thats failing--it's the product. The recording industry has only one product--the album. Their entire business model is based on the creation, production, and distribution of the album (at this point in time, the CD). Fewer and fewer people want albums--they want digital singles. To save their industry, all they have to do is stop wasting their resources producing what people don't want (the album) in favor of what they do (the digital single).
Whoo...not only does he admit to the civil offense of copyright infringement, but also the federal offense of breaking the anti-circumvention clause of the DMCA. Get ready for some prison time bud...oh wait, it's just us proles that the law applies to.
One thing I think this clip clearly shows is that the very people that we need to have advising on legislation like this do a very poor job translating all the technical details into terms the legislators--some of whom seem to have less of a grasp of technology than your average grade schooler--need to understand. Once you start throwing terms like "routing communications" and "IP address" out there, you've lost them. Kerr was confusing Rep. Gohmert rather than informing him.
This is something the lobbyists and "experts" for some other industries do very well. Their positions and statements may be utter crap--but at least it's understandable crap--and this is why we get crappy laws.
And can be none. It's too easy to conceal your identity on the internet--which is Kerr's whole point, although he describes it rather poorly in the clip. How can you police a massive group of essentially anonymous PC's many, if not most of which reside in other jurisdictions and countries?
The stupid...it hurts...Lets also make a law that says it's OK to kill someone that you think, maybe, might be, but you're not quite sure, trying to kill you.
I think we should pass a law that states "In order to pass legislation on a particular subject, you must first pass a college level test on that subject". Hell, even a high schooler with basic IT knowledge would know that's idiotic.