Have You Been Threatened By Lodsys? Please Share Your Story

from the speak-up dept

One of the worst patent trolls out there has been Lodsys, a company that got a few crappy patents from Intellectual Ventures, which it claims covers some rather basic functionality found in lots and lots of mobile apps. It then started to threaten basically everyone if they used things like Apple's own in-app payment offerings, even though Apple (via a deal with Intellectual Ventures) already technically has a "license" to avoid infringing on the patents. It's been pretty clear that it's something of a shakedown business. Lodsys has sent out tons of threatening letters to lots and lots of app developers, but tends to run and hide when a company actually fights back. Lodsys is so petty that it appeared to choose one of its targets because an app developer called them a patent troll -- something that Lodsys' lawyer admitted. Oh, and apparently, Lodsys asks to be paid via a Swedish bank in an effort to avoid paying taxes. And, unfortunately, plenty of app developers do pay, because it's too expensive to fight back. Promising apps are stymied because of this.

And Lodsys just keeps on going. The folks over at the the Application Developers Alliance (disclaimer: in the past they've sponsored some stuff we've done) have been fighting back against Lodsys for quite some time, and have now set up a Lodsys Victim Survey, hoping to collect information and data about Lodsys' threats. Part of the reason that trolls like Lodsys get away with what they're doing is that they can effectively act in secret much of the time. Recipients of threat letters are often quite afraid to speak out, and that leaves them isolated, giving Lodsys much more power. Similarly, with many patent trolls, they seek to include gag orders on settlements (and some patent trolls have even tried to place gag orders on threat letters or early negotiations). Hopefully, collecting useful information and finding others who have been similarly targeted, it will be easier to fight back against egregious patent trolls like Lodsys. If you, or someone you know, has been threatened by Lodsys, please consider filling out the survey.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Guardian, Jan 29th, 2014 @ 1:06am

    NSA NSA NSA

    i bet they aint suing the nsa for backdooring all there apps...

     

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

  2.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Jan 29th, 2014 @ 1:52am

    Why not expand it and add other patent trolls as well?

     

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

  3. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    torpeytucky, Jan 29th, 2014 @ 3:27am

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

  4.  
    icon
    JustMe (profile), Jan 29th, 2014 @ 5:28am

    Re: torpeytucky

    A) Seriously? I can't think of a worse place to spam than a tech site with a highly engaged and intelligent readership.

    B) Based upon the typo in "anyĢlace" I'm guessing a Cyrillic keyboard was used. Thoughts?

     

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

  5.  
    icon
    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 29th, 2014 @ 7:54am

    Re:

    Why not expand it and add other patent trolls as well?

    One bridge at a time, Ninja, one bridge at a time. There is very much a danger of fighting a war on multiple fronts, and that is never a good idea.

     

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


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