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So Close to Making a Point

December 1st, 2005

For those of you who have never seen a BlackBerry, God bless your innocent soul. The little devices have invaded not only American politics but the legal and IT elite. What, you might ask, is common about those three groups? Let’s just say I have a passing interest in all three. To the uninitiated, the BlackBerry presents the unique opportunity to be plugged into your email at all time, which is wonderful if you feel that inane email is of such importance as to warrant immediate access.

The Federal Government is hooked on these things, so you’ll imagine my giddiness when I learned that the entire BlackBerry network was going to be shutdown due to patent infringement. Finally, I thought, those in charge of the patent law in this country could see its damaging effects… see that a new balance needed to be struck to ensure innovation. But it would seem that my dreams are not to be.

NTP, the patent holder going after RIM (makers of the BlackBerry), is simply too smart to upset Congress and its friends. It has made clear to the Court that any injunction it might issue should exclude government users! Brilliant, simply brilliant. This CNN Money article does a good job summarizing the issue. Suffice to say, RIM is left with little choice now that the issue of patent validity and infringement have been reviewed by the Federal Circuit. They either face an injunction which will only impact the people who can do nothing to save them or pay over a likely billion dollar settlement to NTP.

Imagine what could have happened if Congress was actually impacted by the laws it passes…

probonogeek Uncategorized

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