Kodak went after Apple first, Apple countersued.
That has generally been the case. Apple has only rarely started a patent war.
Trade dress and copyrights? Yes. Patents? Not so much.
WWGD (What would google do)? No way to tell. Google doesn't have enough patents to make it worth while to go after any of the big players. If they DO buy the patents and then sue, it will be further sign of their hypocrisy. They are very willing to violate everyone else's intellectual property, so their use of patents to protect their own would be hypocritical.
Aren't patents support to protect the inventors so that they have an incentive to innovate? Who in their right minds said that patents could be transfered? Doesn't that defeat the purpose?
So OK maybe the inventor can benefit by selling his idea, thus giving him an incentive to come up with that idea, but then once it is sold, you're not protecting anyone anymore. Seems to me that once the original inventor is out of the picture, patents shouldn't mean a thing, IF the idea was to give incentive to inventors.
So you don't have any concept of what PROPERTY means?
Patents are property. They can be bought and sold like any other property. The ability to buy and sell patents actually fosters their implementation since many inventors do not have the resources (or the interest) in commercializing their invention. Do you have any idea how many millions of dollars you'd have to invest to commercialize an important automobile invention? Or a petrochemical refining invention? A small inventor can't do that.
The way the system works is that innovative people can get a patent on their invention - and then sell it to the people who CAN implement it.
Doesn't anyone else find it a bit obscene that under the current patent system you're allowed to buy patents from someone else for a hell of a lot of money if you outcompete the next guy. In this case let's imagine both Google and Apple put in bids for $1BN and one of them wins.
Thats 6000 patents at $160k each.
You can then use those purchased patents to sue the loser of the purchasing battle for many billions more dollars. For nothing you've innovated yourself, just purchased. Pieces of paper that last only 20 years.
You're not simply buying pieces of paper. You're buying the right to practice some novel invention. If you're willing to spend that kind of money, there must be some value that justifies it.
Patents serve a useful purpose to society. While I can understand the sentiment that there is not enough research to weed out the stupid patents and even that it should be easier to overturn a patent when it is shown to be overreachingly broad, this sentiment that patents shouldn't exist and shouldn't be treated like other property is inane.