Feeds

Tech giants link arms with startups against patent trolls

Non-aggression pact for licensing

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

A group of big names in tech is trying again to stem the ravages of patent trolls by forming a mutual non-aggression pact.

Google, Canon, SAP, Dropbox, Newegg, Pure Storage and Asana are the foundation members of Lotnet – the License on Transfer Network – and they hope to attract other tech players to the fold.

While it's only been announced today, there seems to have been some stealth-mode work going on for most of this year: the first four companies in the list signed their agreements on 31 January 2014.

The agreement is that if any company in Lotnet sells its patents, all other companies in the network will get a royalty-free license to use the IP. That would protect members of the network from being pursued if a patent sale ended up with the patents in the hands of a troll.

“That means that companies retain their right to enforce a patent so long as they retain ownership of it. However, as soon as it is sold, a license to the other members becomes effective, protecting them from attacks by the troll to which the patent was sold”, the group's announcement explains.

Coverage isn't absolute: there are “carve-outs for certain M&A transactions and change of control”.

With Google, Canon and SAP in the list (the first two described by Bloomberg as the US's two top patent recipients in 2013), it's perhaps not surprising that the group claims coverage of 300,000 patents and total revenue over $US117 billion.

Membership of Lotnet costs between $US1,500 and $US20,000 annually depending on revenue. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Lawyers mobilise angry mob against Apple over alleged 2011 Macbook Pro crapness
We suffered 'random bouts of graphical distortion' - fanbois
Just don't blame Bono! Apple iTunes music sales PLUMMET
Cupertino revenue hit by cheapo downloads, says report
US court SHUTS DOWN 'scammers posing as Microsoft, Facebook support staff'
Netizens allegedly duped into paying for bogus tech advice
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Verizon bankrolls tech news site, bans tech's biggest stories
No agenda here. Just don't ever mention Net neutrality or spying, ok?
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.