A Patent Lie

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I was naive.

Even if the original intention was truly defensive, a patent portfolio can easily change hands, and a company can even more easily change its mind. One of the patents I co-invented is so abstract, it could not only cover Facebook's News Feed, but virtually any activity feed. It puts into very sharp focus the trouble with software patents: Purposefully vague wording invites broad interpretation. In their complaint, Yahoo alleges that Facebook's News Feed violates "Dynamic page generator," a patent filed in by their former CTO related to the launch of My Yahoo, one of the first personalized websites.

Every web application, from Twitter to Pinterest, could be said to violate this patent. This is chaos.

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Software patents should be abolished, plain and simple. Software is already covered by copyright, making patent protection unnecessary. Ask any programmer — developing software is as creative and unique as writing poetry. Yahoo's lawsuit against Facebook is an insult to the talented engineers who filed patents with the understanding they wouldn't be used for evil.

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Betraying that trust won't be forgotten, but I doubt it matters anymore. Nobody I know wants to work for a company like that.

A Patent Lie: How Yahoo Weaponized My Work

I'm embarrassed by the patents I filed, but I've learned from my mistake. I'll never file a software patent again, and I urge you to do the same. For years, Yahoo was mostly harmless. Management foibles and executive shuffles only hurt shareholders and employee morale. But in the last few years, the company's incompetence has begun to hurt the rest of us. First, with the wholesale destruction of internet history , and now by attacking younger, smarter companies. Yahoo tried and failed, over and over again, to build a social network that people would love and use.

Unable to innovate, Yahoo is falling back to the last resort of a desperate, dying company: litigation as a business model. That it's Yahoo makes it even sadder.

Congress dismisses RSS claim against Rahul as 'patent lie'

The complaint isn't really wrong when it asserts that: "For much of the technology upon which Facebook is based, Yahoo! But being first with something generic that would have been invented by someone like the wheel — as opposed to something few could have imagined like the Segway — is a big difference. Illustration: From one of the patents I helped Yahoo obtain.


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Lying to the Patent Office invalidates patent

Current Stock:. A gripping inside look at high-stakes lawyering, A Patent Lie is further evidence that Paul Goldstein is an emerging master of the legal thriller.

About This Item

After being forced from his high-powered Manhattan law firm, Michael Seeley—the tough-but-wounded hero of Errors and Omissions —has set up shop in his native Buffalo. Partly out of need, partly out of pride, Seeley takes on a case for his estranged brother, whose small biotech firm is suing a Swiss pharmaceutical giant over a controversial new AIDS vaccine.

Seeley heads out to Silicon Valley to lead the case, but soon realizes there is much more at stake than he was first led to believe. As certain partnerships come to light, and financial gains become staggeringly clear, Seeley's own life may be in grave danger. Product Details Author: Paul Goldstein. Format: Paperback.

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Pages: Language: English. ISBN ISBN X. Weight: Dimensions: 5. Case Pack: Folder: RandomHouse. Shipping Origin: Westminster, MD. Publisher Identifier: P-RH.


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