Google is part of group that files a brief asking courts to stop honoring vague patents

Google is part of group that files a brief asking courts to stop honoring vague patents
Google, Dell, Facebook, Homeaway, Intuit, Rackspace, Red Hat and Zynga have filed a "friend of the court" brief with the U.S. State Court of Appeals for the Federal circuit. The case involves an financial corporation named Alice Corp. that received a patent in July for a way to close a computerized transaction. The plaintiff, a company called CLS, says that Alice's patent, for a "data processing system to enable the exchange of an obligation between parties," was written too broadly. And that is where the "friend of the court" brief comes in.

Google, Dell, Zynga and the others want the courts to stop upholding and honoring patents vaguely written. A patent that asks to cover a certain technology "on a mobile device" is not specific enough according to the brief. Merely writing a sentence or two about an idea that someone has and saying that it is performed over the internet or on a mobile device could potentially block a tech company from moving forward on a project and in the eyes of the petitioners, paying a licensing fee would probably seem like paying blackmail to them.

Notably absent from the brief is a pair of companies that each have its legal team on the CEO's speed dial, Apple and Microsoft. For those who enjoy going through legal documents, you will find the brief below.

source: AllThingsD



11. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

yes lets all GET TOGETHER N STOP APPLE M$ & others trying to sue FOR STUPID COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT. I moslty BLAME APPLE who started this hole ideal

9. paulislegend

Posts: 42; Member since: Mar 15, 2012

FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! they also need to have qualified people reviewing them as well... also... why the fug is Google's drop down notification patent taking so long to be approved?

6. anywherehome

Posts: 971; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

blame just Apple +Microsoft =pure evil

8. shuaibhere

Posts: 1986; Member since: Jul 07, 2012

I've been saying this for years....

10. RapidCat

Posts: 351; Member since: Jun 12, 2012

i hear it for years.

5. someones4

Posts: 628; Member since: Sep 16, 2012

I hope that Apple will be sitting on a pile of worthless patents.

4. Hammerfest

Posts: 384; Member since: May 12, 2012

#1 holder of vague, common sense, broad, silly, and prior art patents? Apple... Next we will hear Apple filing a "friend of the court" for CLS

3. MeoCao unregistered

Apple is freaking, it has lots of such patents: "rectangle and rounded corners on computers" "rubber on computer" "address book on computer" ,,, You name it.

2. Reluctant_Human

Posts: 915; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

It's brilliant going after this smaller company for a stupid and vague patent so they can set precedence.

7. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Something is weird about this. The generally accepted process is to file a request for re-examination with the U.S PTO. Further, there hasn't been a verdict at the trial court level, and Amicus appeal briefs are being filed?

1. CaptainCool

Posts: 8; Member since: Oct 16, 2011

I'm really against this. I just submitted a patent that would make it so you can navigate a mobile device with your hand or a different object. /sarcasm

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless