Friday, December 18, 2015

The 4 worst patents of 2015; Washington Post, 12/14/15

Larry Downes, Washington Post; The 4 worst patents of 2015:
"This was another depressing year for patent law, which long ago lost sight of its constitutional moorings as a balanced and limited source of incentives for innovators. Though Congress, the courts and the Patent and Trademark Office each tried in their own way to rein in a system widely-regarded as out of control, in the end nobody made much progress...
The polite name for such companies is “non-practicing entities,” but most of us know them as patent trolls. And according to the Consumer Technology Association, these parasites have drained over $150 billion from the U.S. economy since 2013, at a pace that is accelerating.
Beyond the trolls, there’s a more fundamental problem. The mismatch between expanding patent coverage and the quickening pace of disruptive change has become one of the greatest sources of danger to the innovation economy.
That’s especially true of patents granted for basic software and abstract business methods — categories that have only recently been recognized in the first place."

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