Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

US Tech Firms Attack Australian WiFi Patent

from the patent-nuttiness dept

In the last year or so, we've been seeing a lot of companies come up with random patents that they claim are violated by various WiFi implementations. One of the holders of such patents is the Australian government science organization CSIRO, who recently sued a Japanese owned firm in the US for violating those patents. That's scared a bunch of big US firms who have decided to take action. Microsoft, Dell, HP, Intel, Apple and Netgear have all teamed up to try to invalidate the patent. Note again the incredibly involved (and expensive) process to prove that a patent never should have been granted in the first place. And people wonder why the patent system needs to be reformed?

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  • identicon
    James Quintana Pearce, 18 May 2005 @ 1:54am

    Let's not jump to conclusions

    I agree the patent system needs a serious overhaul, but lets not jump to the conclusion that this particular patent should not have been granted...after all, the CSIRO is no patent troll.

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

  • identicon
    Michael Traun, 29 May 2006 @ 4:04pm

    But on the other hand, the Australian government develops this, patents it and now that the big name companies have been using it wants to nullify it? What is the point of developing it, if big name companies can steal your invention? This patent was handed down in 1996 ... 10 years ago.

    This is not another "nutty claim". This is quite legitimate.

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

  • identicon
    Erk Masfield, 21 Jun 2007 @ 2:39pm

    Ya BUT

    If you are a goverment agency that fails to recognize other patents, why then would you suddenly recognize your own? With NO product.. just an idea.. you have nothing to sue for. What have you lost with nothing for sale?

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

    • identicon
      goober, 21 Jun 2007 @ 9:12pm

      Re: Ya BUT

      CSIRO makes a lot of money selling its research, its patents, to industry.

      Just because it's a government agency that develops and patents an idea does not mean it is not entitled to financial compensation, even if its only to cover costs with perhaps a bit more to fund other research.

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

  • icon
    cofiem (profile), 16 Oct 2009 @ 4:28am

    ABC Catalyst has story on this


    It is quite one-sided (for CSIRO). They don't seem to realise that even if the patent is valid, going after businesses that actually use it will harm innovation. I know CSIRO is a research facility and uses the money for more research, as the above commenter mentioned... this does seem like one case where the patent really does make sense.

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

  • identicon
    Frances Urquhardt, 25 Oct 2009 @ 9:00pm

    Self-serving US TROLLS

    Isn't it strange when a non-American company actually succeeds in protecting its rights under patent law, that all the self-serving American TROLLS emerge from under rocks and out of sewers to complain about unfair treatment ?

    Good work CSIRO - keep it up !! To hell with those US hypocrites !!

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

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