« Advice on Biglaw | Main | Entry Level Hiring: The 2015 Report - Final (?) Call for Information »

Monday, April 27, 2015

Google Announces Patent Purchase Experiment

 

Google-logo-high-resToday, Google announced a patent purchase promotion, which is an open call for those who wish to sell their patents to the company. Some details are here, while others are here. The terms are remarkably simple--between May 8 and May 22, sellers must provide Google with the patent number and a proposed price. As part of the transaction, sellers obtain a non-exclusive license to practice the patent together with the purchase price if the offer is accepted.

In typical Google-style, the company states that this call is an experiment and an effort to eliminate the middle-man. In the company's words:

Unfortunately, the usual patent marketplace can sometimes be challenging, especially for smaller participants who sometimes end up working with patent trolls. Then bad things happen, like lawsuits, lots of wasted effort, and generally bad karma. Rarely does this provide any meaningful benefit to the original patent owner.

Of course, the looming question is what will Google do with any patents that it buys? Whatever it wants, of course. According to Google's FAQ on this issue:

Google maintains a large patent portfolio. Any patents purchased by Google through this program will join our portfolio and can be used by Google in all the normal ways that patents can be used (e​.g.​, we can license them to others, etc.) 

One interesting aspect of the program is the speed at which it is moving--sellers will be notified at the end of June, and the sales are expected to be closed by the end of August. 

Posted by Amy Landers on April 27, 2015 at 12:20 PM in Information and Technology, Intellectual Property | Permalink

Comments

Post a comment