Lately, it seems like news about patent lawsuits and bullying is worse than most Hollywood gossip. Frankly, most of the suits are about as justified as Hollywood gossip, if not less. Nevertheless, there are bright spots - such as when the big dogs step up alongside developers to help fight back the patent trolls. Such happened yesterday, when it was revealed that Google has joined Apple in the fight against patent troll Lodsys' claims against developers.


Artist's rendering of Lodsys.

For the uninitiated, Lodsys is a company that does nothing but hold patents for the purpose of licensing them. They produce no goods and offer no real services, and their patents are purchased from others - meaning they contribute nothing to the process. For a much more in-depth look, NPR recently did a fantastic piece on patent trolls called When Patents Attack. In the specific case at hand, Lodsys is suing developers or offering them licensing "deals" for infringing on two of its patents; once again, I'm going to refer you off to David's original post for our initial analysis of the suit.

Notably, Lodsys has been sending out infringement notices to iOS and Android developers since May. Apple formally joined the fray back in June, but Google has done little to help the developers out. Or such was the case - yesterday, Google threw its hat in the ring when it filed a request to have the patents in the case invalidated. Unfortunately, according to intellectual property analyst Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents, Google's request may not be enough.

It's good that Google is throwing their resources into the fray, but it looks like more may be needed. Given the pace at which the legal system progresses, we may have to wait quite some time to see how things progress from here - but let's all hope that Sauron Lodsys is defeated.

[Sources: Wired, FOSS Patents]

Aaron Gingrich
Aaron is a geek who has always had a passion for technology. When not working or writing, he can be found spending time with his family, playing a game, or watching a movie.

  • Telanis

    Whoa, Sauron? Hades? You're giving Lodsys way too much credit.

    • Aaron Gingrich

      Hahaha ;)

  • bacon_hat guy

    Their biggest mistake is going after companies that are 100 times bigger and richer then they are. EA for one is not going to roll over on this one that's for sure knowing how crazy the CEO is. Now that Apple and Google are putting pressure on them, i hope they lose everything.

    • Liz

      I hope they don't even RIP but suffer eternal torment in the hell of unending Kardashians reruns.

      Patent trolls are absolute scum!

      • http://schpydurx.livejournal.com ProfessorTom

        I heartily agree with this sentiment.

        Defending IP that you have created and nurtured is one thing; making a living by screwing inventors out of hard earned cash is an evil that ought to be a capital offense.

        • Sprinter

          Welcome to American Capitalism at it's best.
          "Steal others things then protect said plundered treasure as your own", that's America

      • Perry Ahern

        "suffer eternal torment in the hell of unending Kardashians reruns."

        What an exquisitely vile torment. Vicious and nasty, yes, but patent trolls deserve it.

  • mskks64

    Glad to see apple and google doing something together! haha

  • L boogie

    Even serpents have warmer hearts than these monsters, there should be tenth circle of hell where these living afterbirths belong.

  • Andy
    • William the Conqueror

      Lulzsec are arrested by British police. They're not going to do fuckall anymore. Didn't you know?

    • William the Conqueror

      Lulzsec are arrested by British police. They're not going to do ****all anymore. Didn't you know?

    • William the Conqueror

      Lulzsec are arrested by British police. Didn't you know?

      • Andy

        ok ok ok lol erm no, i heard 1 person got arrested in the Shetlands but kinda assumed a group like that consisted of more than 1 person.
        My point was lodsys deserve as much hassle as possible

        • Kyle

          All lulzsec would do is take down their website, its all they ever seemed to do... not much of a punishment for evil patent trolls.

  • Scott olyer

    Now if only apple would stop sueing everyone and doing the same exact thing to other companies trying to make any sort of product that competes with theirs...