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How Patent Trolls Destroy Innovation 97

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-had-an-idea-therefore-your-effort-is-mine dept.
walterbyrd sends this story from Vox: Everyone agrees that there's been an explosion of patent litigation in recent years, and that lawsuits from non-practicing entities (NPEs) — known to critics as patent trolls — are a major factor. But there's a big debate about whether trolls are creating a drag on innovation — and if so, how big the problem is. A new study (PDF) by researchers at Harvard and the University of Texas provides some insight on this question. Drawing from data on litigation, R&D spending, and patent citations, the researchers find that firms that are forced to pay NPEs (either because they lost a lawsuit or settled out of court) dramatically reduce R&D spending: losing firms spent $211 million less on R&D, on average, than firms that won a lawsuit against a troll. "After losing to NPEs, firms significantly reduce R&D spending — both projects inside the firm and acquiring innovative R&D outside the firm," the authors write. "Our evidence suggests that it really is the NPE litigation event that causes this decrease in innovation."
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How Patent Trolls Destroy Innovation

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  • by martin-boundary (547041) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @05:54AM (#47710673)
    Extra! Extra! This just in! New research proves that patent "trolls" actively reduce wasted "R&D" attempts by sad deluded companies aiming to reinvent by themselves and worsen already existing ideas! WIPO economic policies vindicated! Simplification within reach! Coming soon: the Golden Age of the One, Single And Perfect Idea Of Everything (a.k.a. "the Wheel") ! Thanks "trolls", your country owes you a debt of gratitude!
  • by fey000 (1374173) on Wednesday August 20, 2014 @06:24AM (#47710773)

    Extra! Extra! This just in! New research proves that patent "trolls" actively reduce wasted "R&D" attempts by sad deluded companies aiming to reinvent by themselves and worsen already existing ideas! WIPO economic policies vindicated! Simplification within reach! Coming soon: the Golden Age of the One, Single And Perfect Idea Of Everything (a.k.a. "the Wheel") ! Thanks "trolls", your country owes you a debt of gratitude!

    Dear Mr. martin-boundary,
    I am writing to notify you that I currently own patent #2139986924, entitled "Process through which a human being may communicate a non-specified message of arbitrary weight and importance to one or more other human beings without the distinct personal application of auditory signals and cues". It is clear through your most recent activity that you have applied this process without my express written consent. You are thus legally beholden to the patent owner, and unless you reimburse me a sum of €12,000 I will be forced to recoup the losses I have unjustly suffered from your piracy to the fullest extent permitted by US law. You have 45 minutes to comply.

    Thank you for your cooperation
    Mr Troll, Esq.

    PS. Perhaps you shouldn't try to reinvent the wheel.

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurence of the improbable. - H. L. Mencken

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