Patent trolls playing the system

The continuing existence of patent troll is a baffling failure of modern regulation. For those not familiar with this mythical figure, it is the bane of the software industry in the United States. If you are new to the term, I highly recommend listening to this amazing podcast from NPR […]

What’s up with software copyright? Contrasting Oracle v Google and SAS v WPL

For something which has the unequivocal weight of the law behind it, software copyright has had a rather bumpy history in the courts. Once we get past the obvious facts of law, namely that copyright protects source code, the application of such protection has been more difficult. The reason for […]

Lessons to be learned from the social media patent war

By now there is growing evidence that software patents do not benefit anyone. Really, software developers, software experts, venture capitalists, and industry insiders, everyone who is actually involved in producing software knows that software patents are a blight to the industry. The only ones who seem to benefit are patent […]

ECJ’s Advocate General favours interoperability in Europe

Long-time readers may remember the interesting case of SAS Institute v World Programming (my analysis here), an important software interoperability decision in the UK that got referred to the European Court of Justice. The case sets SAS, one of the biggest business software giants, against a UK software company that […]

When patents attack

This is an excellent podcast from NPR about software patents Some truly eye-opening interviews and in-depth investigation looking at patent trolls, the reason East Texas District is the epicentre for patent litigation, and the effect of software patents on innovation. While it is obviously American-centric, anyone involved in software has […]

BitTorrent in patent dispute

BitTorrent Inc has been sued for patent infringement by a company named Tranz-Send Broadcasting Network. I usually suspect the presence of a patent troll when it seems impossible to find the website of the claimant in the patent dispute, and when most of the Google results for the company include […]