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Oracle Patents

Oracle Sues Lodsys For Patent Trolling 119

RWarrior(fobw) writes "PJ reports at Groklaw that Oracle has sued well-known patent troll Lodsys, asking for declaratory judgement in the Eastern District of Texas that Oracle and its customers don't need Lodsys licenses, and that Lodsys patents are invalid anyway. 'It seems that Lodsys has been going after Oracle customers, and they in turn have been asking Oracle to indemnify them. Lodsys, methinks, has made a mistake. One doesn't go after Oracle's money. No. No. Never a good plan. I suspect Oracle will go for damages, tripled, and all their expenses, legal fees, etc. when this is over.' PJ also points out that which companies are the good guys and which are the bad guys depends on which case you're looking at. "
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Oracle Sues Lodsys For Patent Trolling

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  • by ilikenwf ( 1139495 ) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @02:57PM (#40223101)
    I mean, Oracle did just basically lose a huge patent troll case over a freely available API implementation...
  • Patent trolls (Score:1, Insightful)

    by smittyoneeach ( 243267 ) * on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @03:01PM (#40223167) Homepage Journal
    Patent trolls,
    And that lawfare schtick,
    Like facial moles,
    Lest one suffer a prick.
    Burma Shave
  • Re:confused (Score:5, Insightful)

    by StormReaver ( 59959 ) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @03:13PM (#40223383)

    Whom do I cheer for now?

    That's easy: neither.

    Oracle is an evil company suing another evil company, but neither one is the good guy. Oracle's interests just happen to align with The Right Thing to Do on this occasion, so they are on the side of good by pure coincidence.

    Don't cheer for Oracle, but cheer for the good thing Oracle just happens to be doing at this fleeting moment in time, for Oracle will still be evil at the next earliest opportunity.

  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @03:32PM (#40223677)

    Lodsys is the troll that went after iOS developers for in-app purchases, even though Apple had already licensed the rights to that patent on behalf of their developers. It's not exactly surprising to see that they'd try the same thing with Oracle, nor is it surprising to see that Oracle is following Apple's lead in trying to intervene on behalf of the smaller guys []. After all, taking on the big companies is hard, but if you can target their customers or users, you can oftentimes win. Lodsys seems to have made a business of doing so.

  • Re:confused (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @03:33PM (#40223685)

    Whom do I cheer for now?

    If Oracle wins this case, the precedent will hurt their ability to patent troll in the future too, painful as this is...cheer for Oracle.

  • Re:confused (Score:5, Insightful)

    by reve_etrange ( 2377702 ) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @04:34PM (#40224679)
    Ideally, the battle also results in a precedent that weakens patent protection for algorithms.
  • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Tuesday June 05, 2012 @05:30PM (#40225485)

    It's certainly bad behavior, but it's very distinct from patent trolls. The entire business case for patent trolls is to get a patent on some obvious BS, written in a nebulous way that it'll certainly apply to upcoming work (I hesitate to use the word "inventions" here), and then when that technological development comes into widespread use, sue. It's just like how mythical trolls under bridges demand payment from passers-by even though the troll isn't providing any service at all; the patent troll doesn't actually do anything useful; their patent isn't even useful, it's so vague and nebulous and doesn't have any details to actually describe how to do anything.

    Oracle with their Google/Java case was a little different. They actually provided a useful product, Java, and were mad that Google made their own work-alike version of Java and made a lot of money with it, without paying them anything for it. It would be a lot like some Linux distro including WINE, somehow improving WINE greatly so that it actually works well with ALL Windows software, and then selling computers with this new Linux/WINE distro as a fully-compatible replacement for Windows, and becoming wildly successful, and then MS suing because WINE uses Windows APIs, even though everything underneath is totally different and there's no code copied from Windows OS.

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