Originally Posted by Stealth Pyros
And that's where the patent system is badly flawed. It's ridiculous for patents to work that way. How can one possibly know that out of the millions of patents out there, the product they're trying to make some profit out of is patented by someone else? It's ridiculous that you put in honest work, succeed, to then get raped by some annoying troll filing suit against you for violating patents months or even years later just when you start breaking big profit. Companies, especially big corporations, should have a MUCH smaller window of opportunity to jump on other companies when they release a product that violates any of their patents. I'd say 30 days, or maybe lower the amount of cash the company is entitled to receive beyond a certain time. That, or the FTC/ITC/whoever checks out new products that go retail need to get on the ball and cross-check that there aren't already any patents in existence for those products, and maybe help the creator contact the patent owner if they're interested in licensing or flat-out buying the patent off of them.
This is generally how the game is played. Patent investors wait for companies to introduce products that infringe upon their bogus patents. These patents usually describe a process or idea that has been patented hundreds to thousands of times before it, and perhaps not even one of the existing awarded patents are legitimate to the extent that the concept is original or innovative, and should never have been considered valid in the first place. I highly doubt there could be a regulation of award. Settlements outside of court are between the violator and the party enforcing the patent. I highly doubt NPEs are interested in selling licenses or selling the patents they use as bait, not to mention that start-ups would likely not have the amount desired. There are companies that specifically have software to filter patents, but it is up to businesses to follow-up on their own. I doubt most smaller companies actually file for many patents, so their portfolio is near empty, which gives them nothing on which to contend. It would be quite humorous for one company to sue another company, only to discover that they both hold patents covering equivalent material.