Who Hasn't Chimed In Yet On The RIM vs. NTP Patent Issue

I’m reminded of a Simpsons episode where all the Springfield townsfolk are gathered in the main square debating some major calamity that has beset their town, and someone stands up and yells “I’d like to hear from Sideshow Bob!” I like that scene because it just seemed weird that in all the calamity, someone would call for a random opinion from a minor character who plays sidekick to a clown. What has reminded me of this Sinpsons episode is the “Sideshow Bob” appearances of Intel and Microsoft in the RIM vs. NTP case. Feigning impartiality, both companies have filed “Friends of the Court Briefs” to the federal court with their “unbiased” opinions on the matter. Intel (who stands to gain from RIM success because they sell processors for Blackberry devices) falls on the side of RIM, while MSFT (who soon will offer a version of Exchange server and Windows Mobile that will compete with Blackberry) unsurprisingly supports NTP. Microsoft also can only gain while supporting NTP’s claim that US patents should extend to other countries like Canada where RIM is located, since MSFT has many US patents, too. Intel, meanwhile, plays down this aspect by noting that NTP should have sought International patents to begin with…much like Intel’s shrewd lawyers have no doubt done for Intel Intellectual Property. Hopefully the judge throws out these briefs. Don’t you have to be a a citizen, or at least a human to be a “friend of the court”?

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