by Mike Masnick
Mon, Apr 23rd 2012 11:10am
You may recall that, a few weeks ago, Microsoft bought all of AOL's patents for about a billion dollars. Last week, the news came out that Facebook had bid on the patents too, but lost. However, it's now worked out a deal to buy a bunch of those patents from Microsoft anyway for about $550 million. There's also some sort of cross-licensing as a part of this. The end result is that it's more like Microsoft and Facebook teamed up to pool resources to buy the patents from AOL. It's unclear who now has the Netscape patents, or what's going to be done with these patents. It's good that they didn't end up in the hands of pure trolls, but it still seems like a shame that these companies have to spend so much money on something of which the only value is in either keeping them from getting sued or in shaking down others for innovating. What happened to the days when companies could just compete with products in the marketplace?
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Comcast's Decision To Charge Roku Users A Bogus Fee Highlights Its Uncanny Ability To Shoot Innovation In The Foot
- Techdirt Podcast Episode 110: Luck In Silicon Valley, With Robert Frank
- Patent Troll Sues Netflix, Soundcloud, Vimeo And More For Allowing Offline Viewing
- Court Says Microsoft Can Sue Government Over First Amendment-Violating Gag Orders
- Pennsylvania Court Shrugs Off Microsoft Decision; Says Google Must Turn Over Emails Stored At Overseas Data Centers