John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Google Brands Intellectual Ventures a Patent Troll for Latest Suit

Troll2Intellectual Ventures, the “invention capital firm” founded by former Microsoft executive Nathan Myhrvold, is suing Motorola Mobility for patent infringement. Again.

On Wednesday IV sued Motorola Mobility in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, claiming the Google-owned company had infringed seven more of its patents. IV had previously sued the company over six patents in a 2011 Delaware lawsuit, so this brings the grand total of disputed IP items to thirteen, covering everything from multimedia messaging to file transfer technology. Interestingly, two of seven patents IV asserts today were owned by Nokia as recently as 2011.

IV, which fancies itself as the architect of a new capital market for inventions akin to venture capital, says this suit is its last recourse following failed efforts to reach an agreement with Motorola. “These infringements complaints are a necessary step in protecting our patent rights and fulfilling our commitments to our investors, inventors and licensees,” the company said.

But Google is opposed to the sort of patent privateering on which IV is building its business. And in a terse statement, it slagged the firm and vowed to fight the suit.

“We’re fighting to stop patent trolls’ use of low-quality patents to extort money from companies that actually innovate and make real things,” a Google spokesperson told AllThingsD. “We support bipartisan efforts by the White House and Congress to end these kinds of abuses.”

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald