In the past we have seen how patent trolls sue companies over very vague patents that they own. Sometimes they’re successful, sometimes they’re not, but the idea is to try and force companies into coming up with a settlement agreement to avoid further litigation or time wasted in the courts.
Naturally this isn’t a very nice thing to do, and to help do their part in combating patent trolls, Google has decided to roll out a new program in which they will give small companies a pair of “starter patents” to help them get their business off the ground, and to potentially fend away any patent trolls who might come after them.
That being said, obviously not every company will be eligible for this. The program, dubbed the Patent Starter Program, will apparently only accept as many as 50 startups/developers. These developers will also have to meet certain criterias to be accepted and agree to be part of a patent licensing network that helps defend against patent trolls, which we suppose is fair.
There are other conditions that companies have to agree to, like how the patents will be licensed to Google, and that these patents can only be used defensively meaning that they can’t go after other companies for using their patents like what patent trolls do, and must remain in the LOT Network for at least two years or they will lose the patents.
It certainly seems rather strict but if for the most part you’re mainly concerned about patent trolls and wouldn’t mind the likes of Google backing you up, it sounds like a pretty good idea.