Extortion and Intellectual Property???


Nathan Myhrvold, Microsoft’s first chief technology officer, has a plan for Intellectual Property. First he gathers leading scientists and patent attorneys to brainstorm and come up with ideas that his company, Intellectual Ventures, can license to others. They plan to produce nothing but patents. You know what comes next.

The company also offers to “immunize” corporations from patent suits for a $50 million fee. The company will go around and buy patents before other patent trolls do, thereby “protecting” the clients. Others, of course, will have to face the consequences of not having ponied up the $50 million.

Does the word “blackmail” have any relevance here?


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