The Aftermath Of RIM-NTP: Other Patent Hoarders Emboldened

from the story?--we-need-a-story? dept

Now that the RIM-NTP case is over and the lawyers are counting the loot from a bunch of patents that are very likely to be rejected, it appears that (1) plenty of other patent hoarding firms can't wait to step into the limelight as the "next NTP" and (2) reporters who have been covering this case need to move onto some new patent hoarding company. Well, step right up Forgent, you're the next contestant on "Just How Screwed Up Is Our Patent System?!" The AP has an article all about Forgent's attempts to be the next patent hoarding company to get all the attention. There's absolutely nothing new in this story. We've covered Forgent extensively in the past. The company has done nothing to help innovation in the imaging space. They had some patents collecting dust that they retroactively decided could cover jpg compression technology, and went on a licensing kick, scoring millions of dollars. Of course, now, people are finally digging up some prior art -- but either way it highlights the problem of the patent system. This company did nothing to promote innovation. It did everything to hinder it. And the comments from the company about how this is "the American way" are ridiculous. Holding back others from innovating and improving the market is the American way? Unfortunately, this is the legacy of the RIM-NTP decision. More companies feel emboldened to not innovate, but simply patent and wait for others to innovate.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Joe Smith, 18 Mar 2006 @ 9:54am

    Re: Re: NTP and Forgent are produing anything usef

    Patent law, in particular, exists with the ONLY purpose of encouraging open publication of new and useful inventions as opposed to keeping them secret.

    If that is correct then it is not working. In the NTP and Forgent cases the publication of their patents did not lead to the BlackBerry or jpeg. If you were right then independent discovery should be a complete defence to a patent.

    Work of mind coming up with abstract concepts is just as hard, or in fact, much harder than the work of actually making some product.

    General concepts are easy and cheap. You could stick a think tank full of intelligent people and ask them to come up with general concepts and they should be able to generate a couple of patentable ideas per person per year. There are exceptions but the real challenge is to design a product that the public wants to buy and find a way to produce it and get it to the public at a cost they are willing to pay.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown for basic formatting. (HTML is not supported.)
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Show Now: Takedown
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.