[Discuss] OSHW and patent trolls 99cyasr 99patents 99trolls

Doug Leppard doug.leppard at gmail.com
Wed Aug 21 01:29:29 UTC 2013

Alicia thank you so much for your answer which went to the core of my
question.  I had heard patent trolls went after startups even if there was
no money and either killed the startup with their demands or got a piece of
the action (percentage of the company) to force the startup to get rid of
the threat.


Colleen Chien worked a white paper on "Startups and Patent Trolls".  The
paper has excellent recommendations on changing patent law.  See


I am glad to hear it has not been an issue so far with the OSHW community
but I know it has been with people on Kickstarter project and even
Kickstarter itself.


Doug Leppard


From: discuss-bounces at lists.oshwa.org
[mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.oshwa.org] On Behalf Of Alicia Gibb
Sent: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 1:39 PM
To: The Open Source Hardware Association Discussion List
Cc: 999jy; Marketply
Subject: Re: [Discuss] OSHW and patent trolls 99cyasr 99patents 99trolls


I haven't yet heard of any patent trolls specifically going after open
hardware. Considering that patent trolls make their money off IP, its
possible that a product / project with no IP and therefore no money for them
doesn't appeal to them. I'd also like to hear from the community if this has
happened to anyone?


As for discussion, there is a lot of discussion currently in the US Congress
about IP reform. Nathan Seidle testified a few weeks ago offering his
changes to the current system to lawmakers:


If you've got ideas for patent reform, now is the time to send your
congresspeople an email. 





On Mon, Aug 19, 2013 at 4:04 PM, YES NOPE9 <yes at nope9.com> wrote:

One way to deal with this is to set up a database of ideas released into the
public domain ( prior art )

These ideas could be tagged so that Goggle could search for them .......

Tag could be #PublicDomainPatent



On Aug 19, 2013, at 3:09 PM, Marketply wrote:


Patents will get ever more competition from openly published, freed
inventions, especially the day when there will be a reliable, open
technology database available the patent system can easily access to review
for prior art.


I've been in discussion with a patent lawyer about this for two years, and
I'm getting ready to submit a few guidelines for patent reform, with actual
examples. Now the time is perfect.


There's already hints of this entering public discussion
<http://blog.makezine.com/2013/05/02/first-to-file-nah-first-to-blog> .


It would seem that the change to 'first to file' gives extraordinary
advantages to open technology that hasn't yet been fully realized. I've been
asking lawyers long before the change what this means for publishing (before
anyone files a patent), and all replies look good for publishing 'open
patents' before anyone can file the patent.


Speed is of the essence. And crowd-powered efforts on open projects have
that as a natural advantage. 


We only need a Quirky type of organization for publishing high quality open
technology schematics at lightning speed, and a revolution in open
technology is upon us.


If anyone wants more info on the patent reform guidelines or even to
collaborate we can open a new discussion.


Marino Hernandez

(just a founder of Marketply <http://www.marketply.org> )



On August 19, 2013 at 1:59 PM Doug Leppard <doug.leppard at gmail.com> wrote: 

What are some experiences with OSHW and patent issues especially patent
trolls.  A friend of mine who is a patent attorney said that almost anything
you do could be covered by a patent already.  Recent articles shows of
trolls going after Kickstarter projects.


Any experiences here?  Anything to learn from?


Doug Leppard



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