My new column, Patent Connections, has kicked off over at PatentCalls.com. The first entry, From Bottomlines to Headlines: How Private Research Leads To Patent Litigation dicsusses the role of private research in patent licensing and litigation. As an example, my column discusses the current patent litigation by Interval Licensing, and links to this much more in depth report on the Interval Licensing patent portfolio. Of course, this is only one example, as I note in the column:
Interval Licensing is not the only example of private research leading to patent litigation. Quite famously, patents issuing out of research at AT&T’s Bell Labs, including US Patent 5,341,457, resulted in one of the largest liability verdicts of all time, $1.5 Billion in favor of Alcatel-Lucent over Microsoft. More recently, Ralink sued competitor Lantiq over US Patent 5,394,116, which it acquired, along with four other patents, from Lucent spin-out Agere Systems (sometime after Agere’s merger with LSI). Like the ‘457 Patent, the ‘116 issued out of Bell Labs. While AT&T might not realize any direct financial gain from Ralink’s monetization efforts, the IP may have provided some benefit when leaving Lucent for the spin-out Agere. Today, AT&T also attempts to monetize its patents through auction at ICAP Ocean Tomo. (See the ICAP Fall Catalog, identifying six separate lots offered by AT&T Intellectual Property, Inc.).