The Lurker

Latest posts | Archive

posted by ajf on 2008-02-08 at 11:02 pm

Generally, there are only two types of comment about intellectual property on the internet: inappropriate analogies to physical property (see every single comment by Martin McPhillips in that discussion), and arbitrary justifications of copyright violation (ridiculous "this is illegal, so delete it after 24 hours" statements and other silly rationalisations seem to be common).

I can't remember the last time I saw an exception to this rule, so I wanted to note this one from Timothy B. Lee at Cato:

The reason this matters is that if an injunction is granted, it can often drive the losing party into bankruptcy. In 2006, for example, Research in Motion, makers of the popular BlackBerry mobile device, was forced to pay $612 million to a company called NTP that had no employees, no products, and patents that were subsequently ruled invalid by the patent office. By rights, NTP shouldn't have gotten a dime (because there was ample prior art for its "inventions") but because RIM would have been forced to shut down its BlackBerry network before it had exhausted its appeals, NTP was able to extort hundreds of millions of dollars from the firm.

Related topics: Quote of the day Politics

All timestamps are Melbourne time.