Four of the tech industries largest companies are in Washington today to appeal to the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice in an effort to put a stop to patent trolling from firms like Lodsys and Intellectual Ventures.
Patent trolling has become a sort of industry all of its own in the last few years with firms headed up by lawyers buying up tech patents from failing companies or sell-offs. These firms have no original IP of their own and only exist to extort exorbitant licensing fees and lawsuit wins over everything from individual app developers to giants, such as Google.
The "patent assertion industry" has gotten so big that in 2012 it ate up roughly $30 billion in funds from large tech companies. Google has teamed up with BlackBerry, EarthLink and Red Hat and compiled a 22-page report explaining how Patent Assertion Entities have slowed innovation, decreased jobs, and overall hurt the US economy in the last decade.
The report noted that since 2007, these so called PAE lawsuits have made up over 65-percent of all patent lawsuits in the country.