The InfoSec Blog
21Jul/11

Economic Impact: Patent trolls chase app developers out of the U.S

http://www.linuxfordevices.com/c/a/News/Kootol-joins-Lodsys-as-a-patent-troll/?kc=LNXDEVNL072111

The Debt ceiling crisis will pass; even if there is a crash, the USA can recover from it ...

IF its core economic worth, that is its industrial productivity, is unharmed.

There are a number of ways this can be harmed, poor credit rating among them, lack of availability for investments.

But "off-shoring" has done a lot of harm, not because its bad, or any worse than Hammer's "downsizing" was in principle. In practice there was a feeding frenzy and both were taken to excess and applied inappropriately and to a degree that was harmful. But then the USA has always had the attitude that if a little is good, a lot must be great.
Its how it legislation works and how cars and cities worked. It is hard to convince them otherwise.

But there gets to be a point where the engines of industry all get exported.

Look what happened in the UK.
Yes, Post-war England could not support being the heart of the empire; it had to let go of heavy industry since it no longer had cheap labour and the market for its products. But it took over 30 years and a lot of social and economic damage for the country to get with a new agenda; light engineering and knowledge-work. People don't want to admit it, but Thatcher did a turn-around, shut down steel and shipbuilding and mines, all of which were lame ducks, nearly shut down the motor industry which was almost in the same category (but the mass unemployment resulting form that would have meant too much UI payout)

The resources released, the retraining resulted in a burst of economic growth that amazed Europe and made Maggie hated.

Sadly the Brits as a nation didn't get the message, they thought everything was still all right, and continued downhill after she was gone.

The corner of Wall Street and Broadway, showin...

Image via Wikipedia

The USA has an incredibly mixed economy, just like it has an incredibly mixed ecology. Like the post are UK, the military deployment is a massive drain, but the UK cut back after Suez. Like the UK, the USA has seen that its auto industry can't really compete, but also that it can't afford to shut it down either, and won't let it die a natural economic death.

Like "The City", the USA sees "Wall Street" as being more important than the man on the street.

In a way, the Patent Trolls are parasites. They don't add economic value, they impede industry and innovation, and foster the wealth of a sector that has no contribution to the core ongoing wealth of the nation - the lawyers.

Jacking up prices to the consumers to cover legal costs and licensing fees is clearly inflationary.

This is not good for the economy of ANY nation.

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Posted by Anton Aylward

Comments (1) Trackbacks (0)
  1. Patent trolls follow the strategy Musashi called “injuring the corners”:
    http://www.chinastrategies.com/combatstrategies.htm taking on the smaller
    targets and then using the precedents set to extort from the larger ones.

    In self-defence, the (creative) industry should adopt 2 strategies:

    1) An office for pre-emptive monitoring of patent applications, to blow
    the whistle and demonstrate prior art as soon as the trolls file
    applications. That will deprive them of a) the element of surprise, and b)
    ammunition.

    2) Defensive pre-formation of action classes to launch counter-suits.

    There would be a cost associated with this, but if the big outfits pooled
    what they already spend in routine legal fees and F-Off money on a single
    office, they could probably administer the class rosters for the industry
    and still save a portion. The only risk would be some idiot in the DoJ
    trying an anti-trust suit.

    If an attempt to file an extortion patent reliably and immediately
    produced an expensive outbreak of counter-lawyering, the trolls might be
    tempted to lurk under other bridges.


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