NY Times Seems To Recognize That Nokia's Patent Fights Have Nothing To Do With Innovation
from the it's-just-a-big-pissing-match dept
When Nokia first sued Apple for patent infringement over the iPhone, we noted that it appeared like yet another case of a company getting beat in the market suddenly whipping out some patents to sue over. This seemed to anger the usual bunch of patent system defenders — along with a group of Nokia defenders — but it appears that others are noticing as well. The NY Times has an article discussing Nokia’s sudden aggressiveness in the patent realm, noting that the company has been facing some business troubles, and it’s notable that its patent aggression seems to have shown up at just the same time as its own performance trouble. Funny that.
Of course, this is a major issue. As with so many high tech areas today, there are giant patent thickets. It’s effectively impossible to launch a product that doesn’t violate dozens, if not hundreds, of patents. And (despite claims to the contrary) it’s got absolutely nothing to do with companies “stealing” from each other. It’s got plenty to do with companies making the next logical step in the innovative process, and coming up with products that meet what the market wants. But with patent offices around the world being willing to hand out patents on minor changes, it’s impossible to actually build a useful product that doesn’t violate patents. This has nothing to do with innovation. At this point, patents are just a weapon that can be flung against anyone who does innovate if you can’t compete.