Supreme Court upholds software patents, but sets limits

In a closely-watched case, the Supreme Court has upheld the patentability of software concepts, albeit while setting limits: Companies can't patent a mere abstract idea on a computer, but can patent software ideas that advance or improve upon existing ideas.

The ruling comes a month after Sen. Pat Leahy shelved a hotly-contested bill aimed at limiting the power of patent trolls. Many tech giants and startups backed the bill, while IP licensing firms staunchly opposed it.

A few licensing firms are trading lower on a moderately down day for tech: VRNG -2.2%. ACTG -1.3%. VHC -2.8%. PRKR -3.8%. SPEX -3.1%.

Other related names: RPXC, WILN, DSS, CRDS, MARA.

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Comments (10)
  • thedukeoforange
    , contributor
    Comments (38) | Send Message
    Seems like the only licensing/patent-litig... firms trading up today is $DSS and $CRDS.
    19 Jun 2014, 01:17 PM Reply Like
  • arisberna
    , contributor
    Comments (102) | Send Message
    good! This further support the theory that $DSS is different and not considered a patent troll and could offer a good opportunity!
    19 Jun 2014, 02:02 PM Reply Like
  • haleiwahu
    , contributor
    Comments (4010) | Send Message
    Maybe it's because DSS isn't a target yet. If someone wants to cripple progress, all they have to do is focus on your direction, install roadblocks through the courts then just sit back and stall the proceedings.
    19 Jun 2014, 02:34 PM Reply Like
  • Greenfire87
    , contributor
    Comments (657) | Send Message
    spex takes a small hit.


    Anyone out there that can analyze spex patents?
    19 Jun 2014, 02:25 PM Reply Like
  • Patent News
    , contributor
    Comments (1475) | Send Message
    what does it mean for most of them? anything or just fear?
    19 Jun 2014, 02:37 PM Reply Like
  • Alpha Sponge
    , contributor
    Comments (192) | Send Message
    Hardly a landmark decision but it sounds good for all companies looking to protect their patents. The abstract ideas clause is statutory and they have never been considered patent eligible, and they have upheld the idea that software is patentable.
    19 Jun 2014, 02:39 PM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comments (13) | Send Message
    where are all the know ,everything about everything when an intelligent comment is needed?
    19 Jun 2014, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • Vet67to82
    , contributor
    Comments (867) | Send Message
    All the trading today appears to focus on tomorrow being the 3rd Friday of the month w/options expiring Saturday 6/21/2014:


    * Call Options (June 21 at 3.50) open interest 7473 contracts
    1pm 0.10 -.06 Vol 25 Bid 0.09 Ask 0.17 Delta 0.69
    2pm 0.09 -.07 Vol 628 Bid 0.05 Ask 0.13 Delta 0.5216
    3pm 0.09 -.07 Vol 628 Bid 0.05 Ask 0.10 Delta 0.5328
    4pm 0.09 -.07 Vol 628 Bid 0.05 Ask 0.10 Delta 0.5328


    * Put Options (June 21 at 3.50) open interest 4614 contracts
    1pm 0.09 0.00 Vol 0 Bid 0.04 Ask 0.12 Delta -0.3657
    2pm 0.08 -.01 Vol 50 Bid 0.06 Ask 0.10 Delta -0.4786
    3pm 0.08 -.01 Vol 50 Bid 0.05 Ask 0.10 Delta -0.4687
    4pm 0.08 -.01 Vol 50 Bid 0.05 Ask 0.10 Delta -0.4687


    Remaining open contracts will reward the sellers if they close them, or they expire worthless, and sellers get to keep both the options premium and their shares. However, sellers, gambling all on the few remaining pennies, failed to take the opportunity to close contracts. The remaining open contracts are a risk to the sellers, as a CAFC order tomorrow benefitting Vringo, news articles, or a settlement, or even suggestions of a settlement, could REDUCE, or even turn their current profits into a substantial loss.


    Way too greedy, IMHO.
    19 Jun 2014, 04:53 PM Reply Like
  • mollysbuddy
    , contributor
    Comments (336) | Send Message
    I am not sure, but I don't see this as any threat to V in the G case. Believe, like always, if any thing comes out with the hint of a decision against V players just jump out of the stock. It set limits on what companies can and can not do. V patent does not fall on the idea of the patent. And they proved that in court. Guess that is why V is up half of what it lost today and will probably be up tomorrow.


    Just my thoughts.....john
    19 Jun 2014, 07:25 PM Reply Like
  • BeatNick
    , contributor
    Comments (10) | Send Message
    Let me start by saying I'm no expert either but taking this excerpt from the ruling.......
    '"The court found that digitizing an abstract idea like escrow and putting it on a computer isn’t enough to warrant a patent. Software and technological advances that improve on an idea can be patentable, but the court found in this case that Alice Corp.’s invention didn’t really do that.


    Alice Corp. did not “purport to improve the functioning of the computer itself or effect an improvement in any other technology or technical field,” Justice Clarence Thomas wrote on behalf of the court."..............


    In Google vs. VRingo it's clear that the I.P. patents did in fact Improve the search engine. Now, it's just a matter of how much!


    This is a very small but still, one less court ruling that might have had an impact.
    19 Jun 2014, 08:15 PM Reply Like
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