Venture Capitalist Fred Wilson at AVC citing Lodsys’ legal threats to independent developers says “software patents should not exit,” because they “are a tax on innovation.”
Lodsys, a patent holding firm, has been threatening independent developers of apps for Apple using technology provided by Apple with lawsuits unless they purchase licenses for doing so from Lodsys. The patent firm has garnered some “significant negative feedback from the general public feedback regarding its actions,” according Darrell Etherington at Gigaom.
Wilson, however, says the “mess around Lodsys patents should be a wake up call to everyone involved in the patent business (government bureaucrats, legislators, lawyers, investors, entrepreneurs, etc) that the system is totally broken and we can’t continue to on like this.”
The whole point of these app ecosystems is that a ‘developer in a garage’ can get into business with these platforms. But these ‘developers in a garage’ can’t afford lawyers to represent themselves in a fight with a patent troll.
Thinkprogress’s Matthew Yglesias brought Wilson’s “great little post,” to this blog’s attention, adding his own thought as to why this type of patent mess can occur.