16 Apr '12, 2pm

Patent wars plague Internet Age

Patent wars plague Internet Age

The Internet Age is becoming as known for patent litigation as it is for online innovation. From the makers of computer chips to creators of smartphones and designers of videogames, rivalries have spread from marketplaces to courtrooms with combatants warring over rights to use technology. "For many years, there was basically a stalemate in the patents arms race with an understanding that companies wouldn't sue each other," said Colleen Chien , a law professor at Santa Clara University in Silicon Valley . "That was disrupted by a new business model of patent assertion," she continued. "It has become acceptable to violate the gentlemen's agreement of not suing and now it is the new norm." The break in the unofficial truce was inspired in part by "patent trolls," entities that buy or file patents with the sole intent of some day suing entrepreneurs who use the ideas. Ranks o...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/money/sustainable-business-practices/s...

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