Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

Summary: According to David Drummond, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer for Google, 'if you think about it, it's obvious why we turned down Microsoft's offer'.

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TOPICS: Legal, Google, Microsoft
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Google has clarified why it didn't enter into a joint patent deal with Microsoft, claiming that it 'didn't fall for' a patent trap that Microsoft had created for it.

David Drummond, Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer for Google updated an earlier blog post to add some detail. In this update Drummond says that Microsoft is trying to 'divert attention' from the bigger issue with the assertion that Microsoft had asked Google if it wanted to enter a joint big for the Novell patent acquisition deal.

So why did Google turn down the offer? According to Drummond 'if you think about it, it's obvious why [Google] turned down Microsoft's offer' ...

'Microsoft's objective has been to keep from Google and Android device-makers any patents that might be used to defend against their attacks. A joint acquisition of the Novell patents that gave all parties a license would have eliminated any protection these patents could offer to Android against attacks from Microsoft and its bidding partners. Making sure that we would be unable to assert these patents to defend Android - and having us pay for the privilege - must have seemed like an ingenious strategy to them. We didn't fall for it.'

I must admit that I've lost the point that Google is trying to make here. To me it's coming across like 'patents are bad when they're used against us, except when they're our patents and we can use them to defend our IP.'

What do you think? Are you a Google supporter, or a Microsoft supporter?

Topics: Legal, Google, Microsoft

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  • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

    Update: Microsoft?s Frank Shaw has responded via Twitter:

    ?Hello again David Drummond. This is going to take a few tweets, so here we go. Let?s look at what Google does not dispute in their reply.

    We offered Google the opportunity to bid with us to buy the Novell patents; they said no.
    Why? BECAUSE they wanted to buy something that they could use to assert against someone else.
    SO partnering with others & reducing patent liability across industry is not something they wanted to help do?
    vivianvein
    • Google Translate converts "that grape is sour" into "we skipped the trap"

      Wow, I didn't know their translator is this smart. Add this service to Obama's next prompter please.
      LBiege
      • Time for the sissies over at google to take their dresses off and put

        away their little pity party. And time for Larry to at least act the part of CEO and remind DD that when you're in a hole the first thing you do is stop digging. He's projecting a very poor light on google executive corp intellect and at the same time showing that same think their audience to be idiots that would buy this complete nonsense bs. Hard to say which is worse but either on it's own is reason enough for muzzle and demotion.
        Johnny Vegas
      • Google Doesn't Stifle Competition Litigiously

        Google has sued

        Auction Experts International for click-fraud in 2004
        Froogles.com for trademark infringement in 2005
        Microsoft for setting the default in IE7 to MSN Search in 2006
        Leo Stoller for falsely claiming trademark rights for the purpose of harassing and attempting to extort money out of legitimate commercial actors, both large and small in 2007
        Polish poets for using the domain "gmailpl" in 2007
        Scammers and spammers for scams and spam in 2009
        Erich Specht over the use of the "Android" Trademark in 2009
        The US department of the interior for not considering Google apps in 2010
        Rogue pharmacies for illegal drug ads in 2010


        I am shocked at how little Google has sued. I'm also shocked that they have never sued to stifle innovation or competition.
        Kangaruhs
    • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

      @vivianvein That isn't at all what he was saying... They're looking for leverage to cancel out the royalties that MS and others are charging... These Patents didn't do anything to help them in that position and the Novell Patents are most likely short lived.

      Now why didn't they invite Google into the Nortel Patent bid? That requires a deeper look.
      slickjim
      • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

        @Peter Perry : erm ... you CAN read, right?

        <i><b>"Now why didn't they invite Google into the Nortel Patent bid"</b></i> ... Microsoft <b>DID</b> invite Google to join the Nortel patent bid, but Google said no. That's the whole point of the post you're commenting to.

        By NOT joining the bid, Google have now handed Microsoft et al. 1000 more patents to beat them over the head with. Nice move Google. Best break out the checkbook - I think you may be needing it soon.
        bitcrazed
      • Invite

        @Peter Perry If everyone is sharing the patent pie, Why didn't Microsoft invite HTC, Samsung and other manufacturers in this patent war. Why did they just invite Google and not manufacturers. Afterall, Sony is still in the consortium.
        hardrock2552
  • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

    Am growing weary of Google double-talk, whining.
    systemx
  • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

    <I>"I must admit that Ive lost the point that Google is trying to make here. To me its coming across like patents are bad when theyre used against us, except when theyre our patents and we can use them to defend our IP."</I><br><br>That's pretty much what I'm getting too. If Google is infringing on other's IP, then they need to fess up their mistake. <S>They're</S> Microsoft and Apple aren't doing this to break Android, they're doing it to protect their turf.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • IT makes sense

      @Cylon Centurion <br>The only reason Google wanted the patents was for litigative defense. By entering into a partnership they effectively gave up that right, so buying them with Microsoft makes no sense.<br>If you buy in partnership you cannot use them for defense from MS, Apple or Oracle<br>If you don't buy them you cannot use them for defense from MS, Apple, or Oracle<br><br>In that case why buy them unless you can buy them in entirety?<br><br><img border="0" src="http://www.cnet.com/i/mb/emoticons/plain.gif" alt="plain"><br>
      rhonin
      • It makes NO sense

        @rhonin
        If they wanted litigation protection, then being part of the consortium would have given them that. They can't be sued for shared patents.
        Nooooo, they wanted amunition to fire back at EVERYONE ELSE! Google is trying to play a very bad game of "Nanny-Nanny, Boo-Boo".
        reklissrick
      • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

        @reklissrick no it wouldn't because it was a bargaining chip where they would offer free use of their newly acquired patents in exchange for free use of others patents. The Novel Patents were not that valuable anyway.
        slickjim
      • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

        @peter perry
        I can't believe that Google would take a stance like that. I can't think of a single "for profit" company that would willingly trade thousands of patents for free. If you truly believe Google would do this, then Google should give away their search algorithms for IP to be named at a later date. Even Google isn't that stupid.
        reklissrick
      • It makes sense.

        @rhonin Agreed.
        hardrock2552
    • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

      @Cylon Centurion No they're not... By buying these patents they're building their case against any would be competitors... Not having the patents means it was never their turf to begin with.
      slickjim
      • Poorly worded response

        @Peter Perry

        I know they don't have the patents, I was actually referring to Microsoft and Apple defending their IP. I guess I need to go back and re-word my response.
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
  • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

    Look at who is suing who. Microsoft is saying that they wanted to buy the patents to protect the industry against patent trolling. But Microsoft at the same time sues HTC, Samsung, etc for using Android.

    The patents in a Microsoft/Apple consorium do nothing to solve the problem of Microsoft and Apple trying to sue Android out of existence since they cannot win through free competition. That's why the patents are only valuable with a Linux/Android consortium because patent battles are like nuclear negotiations, you have to have enough nukes to stop the other side through MAD.
    nategator
    • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

      @nategator Microsoft's sueing of HTC, Samsung, etc. has to do with previously owned patents against Linux. Microsoft was giving Google a chance to join the patent purchasing group on another set of patents that likely cover a lot of Android items. Rather than buy into the group, they failed to bid high enough to get those patents, so now they'll likely need to purchase licensing from the consortium of patent buyers. Google's mistake is amplified by them now whining about the whole thing.
      grayknight-22253692004129760887070084760051
      • RE: Google: We 'didn't fall for' Microsoft's patent trap

        @grayknight Are you serious? Did you not read what was written about the Nortel Patents? Google bid 900,000,000 for Patents valued at 1,000,000,000 which means the others effectively bid the value up 450%... This isn't the slightest bit shady to you?

        You weren't part of any Ponzi Scheme's lately were you?
        slickjim
      • Peter Perry, it matter little how much they paid for the patents

        @grayknight
        I do notice that many people place items for sale onto eBay, in the hopes that someone will bid higher then what the seller believes the items are worth.

        If that was not the case, then a seller could go to Craig's List and just advertise the item for a price he is willing to part with it for.

        Whay should it be different with patents? The group appears to believe the patents are worth what they paid, otherwise they would not have made that offer.
        Tim Cook