There are currently four patent “reform” bills being considered by Congress. Patents are a way innovators protect their ideas – which is how we as a society protect our continued economic viability. If people who invent cool stuff can’t protect their cool stuff from thieves – they’ll stop inventing cool stuff.
The GOP wants the Silicon Valley’s love. And by love we mean the millions of donation dollars that currently go mostly to Democrats. And sadly, it appears some Republicans will go to nearly any length to curry some of that coin.
You’ve heard the phrase “patent trolls,” yes? Certainly not a positive sounding term. I mean – trolls?How positive an image does that conjure? The Media are almost always opposed to all things good. So when they with near unanimity help promulgate a term – you need to (re)contemplate its definition.
Mythological trolls — described as old and ugly creatures living under bridges or in caves — are known for one central feature: generally troublesome and injurious to human enterprise. Much of the same can be said for today’s patent troll — the dubious business entity again drawing the ire of Congress that exists solely to acquire patents and make claims of infringement in court.
According to data released this week, Samsung and Apple make up the majority of the top 20 global smartphone models sold in the first quarter of 2014. While that success demonstrates the robust market prowess of these smartphone manufacturers, the real winners are the customers, getting more services, better products and lower prices. Almost the exact opposite happens when companies resort to lawsuits to gain market advantage, a sort of rent seeking via the courts.