Monday, 11 April 2011

Trolls becoming respectable?

An IP bank is being set up in Taiwan, reports Taiwan Focus. It won't merely help fund defences against infringement claims - increasingly, the report says, one way in which businesses compete with each other - but will buy up patents and either licence or sell them to Taiwanese businesses. It seems like an entirely laudable enterprise - and it shows just how complicated is the whole non-practising entity/Troll thing. There is no "bright line" test to tell good from bad, although it's usually not difficult to work out which is which.

And perhaps we need another term to apply to IP owners who engage in litigation in the ordinary course of business - as part of competing, perhaps making life difficult for the other side, rather than for the sake of protecting their important assets. Another instance of IP becoming an end in itself rather than a means to an end.

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