RIM Dealt A Blow In Patent Case

from the it's-the-final-countdown dept

RIM had better get that software workaround they’ve talked about warmed up, as the judge in their patent case with NTP has rejected their attempt to have an earlier settlement enforced. RIM had a few weeks ago asked that the $450 settlement be applied, leading to speculation that it was either trying to cut its losses, or simply just make another legal ploy to drag the case out in hopes it would give the patent office time to invalidate the NTP patents, a path down which it’s headed. The two issues remaining before the court are the injunction NTP’s seeking to shut down Blackberry service until RIM pays up, and damages. Meanwhile, the company’s begun a hearing on a similar patent in the UK, which a Luxembourg-based company claims RIM is violating.

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Comments on “RIM Dealt A Blow In Patent Case”

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Googly_eyes says:

Re: Are you apatent troll?

Your comment sounds like you are or work for a patent troll.

Their whole business plan is based on the “roll over and pay us” ploy to make their frivilous lawsuits go away.

It’s a dirty, rotten, sick, and twisted business model, and shows what is wrong with our patent system, and is on the extreme and disgusting end of capitalism –

1)don’t do anything
2)bully companies who *are*, by suing them
3)reap large rewards

dude says:

Re: Re: Yeah

Are you a mental retard or high-school dropout ?
“Frivolous lawsuits” do not go on appeal and before the US Supreme Court , they are thrown out immediately on declaratory judgement by the judge.
Bussiness is just bussiness, so why don’t you shut up and use your rhetorics against some more serious abuses like oil profits, corporate ousourcing of jobs, millions of people without health insurance etc etc. etc. ?

googly_eyes says:

Re: Re: Re: Yeah

Hmmm mental retard or high school drop out…

Perhaps I’m both.

However, my point, (which was seemingly not well stated, and is apparently on top of my head) was that the “shoulda paid ’em $23 mil in the first place” comment plays right into the hands of would be patent trolls – the kind of comapnies that *do* sue frivilously.

I have no opinion on NTP’s lawsuit, as I certainly don’t know where it came from or it’s merits, and I am no patent attorney – obviously – since I’m mentally retarded and dropped out of high school.

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Yeah

The comment above just misses the target a little. It’s not a “frivolous lawsuit”, but it is a “frivolous patent”. Patents on mobile email are about as inventive as patents on “getting your chocolate in my peanut butter.” That’s true now, as it was in 1991 when the original inventor got his patents. Email is just an application, and the mobile phone is just a platform.

What about news on mobile phones, or maps on mobile phones? Those are both different applications that run on a mobile platform. No patent lawsuits there, though. What makes email so special? RIM is making millions, and the trolls have come out of the woodwork, that’s all.

Why don’t I run down to the Patent Office and get the rights to VoIP on Linux computers? Or Video file rendering (a la Adobe premiere) on mobile phones?

The original inventor DID try to make a go of it, but failed. Now I hear people suggesting that kind of effort should be rewarded? Forget that! The hard part of software/tech invention these days isn’t getting the idea – those are a dime a dozen. The hard part is successful implementation, bug fixes, integration with legacy, partnering, production, sales, etc. You know, the kind of stuff that makes an idea a business.

Yes, we need patents to protect inventors from those who would steal their ideas, and stifle their opportunity. But the current system is flawed, offers frivolous patents, and offers more of disincentive to innovation than incentive. With the system today, you know that if you invent something, work hard to bring it to market, and make money, someone will sue you cuz they had some silly, vague idea that the patent office approved.

The Other Mike says:

Re: Re: Are you apatent troll?

Actually the cofounder of NTP that claims to have the original patent did try to bring it (the technology) to market but his company failed. After that he formed NTP with an attorney to protect his patent(s). I am not saying he is right or wrong in the lawsuit, only that your opinion is not based a solid uderstanding of the history of this case (as is evident in your point number 1).

Personally I don’t know who to root for in this case because they both deserve to lose. But it’s like a car wreck: you just can’t help but to look when you pass by.

PalmBerry says:

America's Inventions

In the midst of charges and counter-charges in the RIM/BlackBerry case, the central issue may become lost. RIM is a foreign multinational corporation found by the courts to have expropriated American inventions for their own gain. Foreign company theft of American innovation is widespread. This is a serious, on-going threat to America’s economic and national security and the RIM/BlackBerry case is a clear example.
Americans should be screaming for justice, starting with an injunction against RIM and a phased replacement of BlackBerry with Palm or alternative U.S.-invented devices.
As a matter of equitable public policy, it is time for all branches of American government and law enforcement to get rid of their BlackBerrys and replace them with an American product and service such as the Palm and the NTP licensed “Good Technologies” service which does the same tasks as the BlackBerry.
It is increasingly difficult for smaller inventors and patent holders to counter the marketing and legal strategies of bigger businesses, especially those financed by outside interests. And again, the RIM/BlackBerry case perfectly illustrates this practice. It is almost impossible to believe that a large, well-financed company like RIM failed to research all prior art in the patent system before bringing the BlackBerry to market.
The courts found that RIM squatted on another’s property and when they were caught, this large multinational corporation could have negotiated reasonable compensation to lease the use of the property. But RIM took the low road. RIM mobilized a massive legal, PR and lobbying effort to paint the victims as abusers: RIM attempted to gain the upper hand against NTP while promoting the argument that the original patent holder, and smaller company, really asked for it. After all, NTP’s technology was very desirable.
The argument is compelling. Every time an American patent protects a desirable innovation, it is bad policy and poor economics to stand by and allow larger multi-nationals to infringe on that patent and then steamroll the smaller company with a media and legal blitz that the smaller company is unable to counter.
In this instance, RIM has abused patent re-examination to try and break NTP. Not on the merits, but break them with punitive costs associated with the new adversarial reexamination procedures which at this point is something on the order of thirty separate re-examination requests.
There are many aspects to this particular case which can be explored and debated.
The facts in this case have become muddied with charges and counter charges and misleading reports, but fairness demands that the media, the public and government agencies honor the intent of the patent system to protect American inventors and innovation.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: America's Inventions

Wow. That’s quite a rant that would be interesting if it were actually even closely related to what happened. Unfortunately, it’s not.

RIM didn’t take any “American invention.” They moved forward on an obvious idea (mobile email) and did it in a way that made people actually want to buy it. They were the ones who did the actual innovation. Thomas Campana *failed* to successfully market the idea — and so it’s hard to see why his estate deserves anything.

Meanwhile, the fact that the USPTO has been clearly finding problems with every single NTP patent suggests that this is anything but a frivolous attempt by RIM to harm NTP. They appear to have a very legitimate claim that these patents are bogus and never should have been granted.

Colin Longhurst says:

Re: America's Inventions

Excuse me? America’s inventions? Are you purposefully ignorant or willfully so? Because your statements indicate a real lack of understanding.

NTP is a PATENT HOLDING COMPANY. This is not an innovator. They come up with ideas – “What if we could build a teleportation device?”, then using their enormous budgets, force through frivolous patents which they shove in boxes. They never make ANY attempt to develop the technologies, they simply hold them in the hope that someone with some brains can figure out a way to make the idea work, so that they can SUE THEM. This is profitable, and business as usual in America.

Large multi-nationals? RIM was a tiny office in Waterloo, Ontario. A couple tech geeks figured out how to engineer a very compact and affordable device, and RIM is certainly no giant. NTP targeted RIM in order to try to squeeze as much money out of them as possible.

What it is, is extortion.

The jerk off spouting patriotic nonsense about American innovation is woefully ill-informed. I would suggest that he works for NTP in some capacity.

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