Digital wars

Unlike the movie War Games, in this war no one could die, at least from a bullet or a missile. It’s a patent war, who sues who, who blocks who and who compensates who.

The past weeks a major battlefield was gambled between Oracle and Google over Java API’s and apparently ended in a truce.

Apple and Microsoft armed themselves with 4000 Patent Warheads” is «“(…)a much larger fundamental problem that we see today,” says Julie Samuels, a staff attorney with the EFF. She says she hears from small companies regularly who get pressured out of the U.S. market because they simply can’t defend themselves against massive patent claims, whether legitimate or not. None of them want to talk to the press, though, for fear of drawing attention — and possibly more legal troubles — to themselves. Ultimately, Samuels worries that patents — especially software patents — will hurt innovators rather than help them. And that’s exactly the opposite of what patents are supposed to do. “The creation of these conglomerations of patents … what this does is create a barrier to entry for the little guy,” Samuels says. “It makes it so much harder to break into the market if you are a creator or an innovator.”»


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