by Mike Masnick
Fri, Nov 7th 2008 7:41pm
We see all sorts of ridiculous patent applications and patents, but my favorites tend to be the patents that have to do with patents themselves (such as the patent app on a method for filing a patent). However, the folks over at Patently-O have highlighted a fascinating patent application from an attorney at Halliburton, which appears to be an attempt to patent the process of patent trolling. The application covers, quite explicitly, having a company (we'll say Company A) that does not invent something, find a company (Company B) that did invent something, but chose to use trade secret protection, rather than patents. Then, the Company A files a patent covering Company B's technology, and then use the issued patent to get money out of Company B.
Now, one could hope that Halliburton's intention in patenting such a process was to use it to stop other companies from doing this, but it does make you wonder. Of course, especially after the Bilski ruling, this patent is most likely dead in the water, but these days, you never know.
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