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Microsoft Patents The Courts Apple

Microsoft, IBM Want to Seal Patents Agreements With Samsung 126

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the nothing-to-see-here dept.
sfcrazy writes "The court battle between Apple and Samsung has created the possibility of disclosing the cross patent agreement between Microsoft and Samsung. Microsoft is suddenly scared and has filed a motion asking the court to seal the cross license agreement. I would like to remind that the Judge has asked both parties to make all the filings in this dispute available to the public for free." And on Monday, IBM filed for a restraining order to prevent Reuters from publishing their agreement with Samsung as well.
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Microsoft, IBM Want to Seal Patents Agreements With Samsung

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  • Re:Nerf bat in play (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Vintermann (400722) on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @03:45AM (#40826089) Homepage

    The reason Apple does it publicly, is that they have to defend their image as spectacularly innovative. They couldn't just have handed over the patents to a proxy and sued with that - although it would have been a lot less risky. They need to defend the idea that rounded corners are innovative, not just in court but in public opinion as well (at least, the part of the public that buys their products).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @03:47AM (#40826097)

    No, Microsoft has released details of the claimed license, by Samsung of its 'Android patents'. But leaks came out that Sammy would get 'marketing money' back from Microsoft, and lo and behold they did.

    Here's Microsoft and their fake claim to IP rights over Android:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15106889

    Here's money back from MS to Samsung:
    http://yro.slashdot.org/story/11/10/16/2050244/microsoft-pays-44-million-to-samsung-and-nokia-for-mango-marketing

    Now suddenly they want the real details sealed? Yet they were keen to claim it was a patent license for IP claims over Android!

    MSFT Investors need to wonder what the truth is here, because Samsung doesn't mind the unsealing, but yet MS does? But MS were the ones making the public claim, not Samsung!!

  • by guttentag (313541) on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @04:46AM (#40826303) Journal

    Wait, what now? Slashdot's summaries are starting to get quite childish. Microsoft is scared, really?

    Normally I would agree with you, in the name of professionalism and all. However, in this case the greater issue is that Microsoft is actually not scared, so the statement is factually incorrect. What TFA actually states is (no joke, paragraph 2):

    Microsoft's hair is on fire about it

    Obviously this is not a cause for Microsoft to be "scared," because its fearless leader doesn't have hair [wikipedia.org]. It would be more accurate for the summary to state, "Microsoft execs are laughing themselves to sleep tonight after a pointless attempt by Apple to set Steve Ballmer's hair on fire."

    Realistically, even if Ballmer had hair, this wouldn't set it on fire. Microsoft has a long history of doing things that either land it in court (bundling, monopoly abuse, etc.) or result in throwing huge sums of money away (Windows Phone 7 [wikipedia.org], Zune [wikipedia.org], 5 billion lost on the Xbox [wikipedia.org], Ultimate TV [wikipedia.org], Actimates [wikipedia.org], BOB [wikipedia.org], SPOT [wikipedia.org], Kin [wikipedia.org], etc.), but none of those things set his dome on fire because Wall Street doesn't care as long as the majority of the world's personal computers are running Windows. I'm not saying Wall Street is correct in doing so, but stock prices rarely have much to do with a company's actual performance, and most public companies teams are focused on "shareholder value." And the shareholders always let Microsoft come out of this stuff unscathed. If this were something that materially threatened Windows or Office, Ballmer's dome might be on fire. But we're not likely to see that show until the new Surface is released and the strategic partners Microsoft just blew off decide what they want to do about it.

  • by MrDoh! (71235) on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @05:26AM (#40826429) Homepage Journal
    Maybe, I do think though there must be a slight fear from anyone creating tech that a few key players may try and claim later. Many tech companies must be dragging lawyers in to design sessions perhaps, just to cover themselves. Having lawyers over your shoulders is going to get people thinking how not to get infringed, maybe not what's the best way to solve a problem. Having knocked out a few UI's with things that, in retrospect, /could/ be close to what Apple are claiming (though on a terminal, not a mobile device) in... late 80's/early 90's, so many of these things look familiar, and may be the thing we'd have come up with. Getting it prototyped/designed on an Amiga, then working on x-windows, with the later MS Windows versions looking very similar. If I'd have made a version for a mobile version, it'd have looked the same again, icons on the bottom, scrollable top part. That a UI I created 20+ years ago, copying my own design onto a mobile device could get me sued for crazy bucks, scares the living snot out of me. The point about it dragging in the euro stuff though is I think spot on, and why this really is going to be crazy for a time yet. The nerf bat really can take out some odd bystanders.
  • Denied (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DeathToBill (601486) on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @08:05AM (#40827077) Journal

    Anyway, the IBM motion has already been denied. If IBM can't get it, there's a fair chance Microsoft won't, either.

    One of the big reasons this is interesting is that we might finally find out exactly what patents Microsoft thinks that Linux violates.

  • Re:Nerf bat in play (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Pieroxy (222434) on Tuesday July 31, 2012 @08:13AM (#40827127) Homepage

    It was well after they had started their suing spree. The way I see it is this: If you want to be competitive and survive you have to play by the rules. The rules state that you can't use some stuff that is patented without explicit permission and/or licensing fees which are not guaranteed to be granted or even fair unless your patent if a FRAND one. If ${BigCorp} wants to be competitive they have to enforce those rules on their patent, to counteract the fact that they're paying everyone up on theirs and thus bleeding money to the competition with no counterpart.

    Apple's stance is not to license, but to restrict which is their perfect right. Some people don't like it.

    The fact that they play by today's rules is a necessity. It doesn't imply at all that they like the rules.

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