Google bought up a bunch of patents so they didn't fall into the "wrong hands"
Last week, Google finished the Patent Purchase Promotion experiment which began in April. The program aims to combat patent abuse by buying up patents "relevant" to Google from both individual inventors and operating companies.
Patent trolling is apparently a big problem, and congress has been too slow to combat it. Patent trolling entails "patent litigation brought by 'non-practicing entities'- companies that exist primarily for the purposes of owning and suing with a portfolio of patents for inventions created by other people or companies." Critics of Patent Purchase Promotion see the irony in a large corporation buying patents they fear would get into the "wrong hands."
Facts about: other groups combating patent trolling
The License of Transfer (LOT) Network is a group of companies like Google, Canon, Dropbox, and Newegg, who agree to combat the effects of patent trolling. "Under LOT, member companies may do what they wish with their patents, right up until they sell the patent to a non-participant. At that point, other LOT members can get involved in the sale or take a license in the patent. The LOT network is a form of preemptive harm reduction, an attempt to keep patents from landing in the hands of trolls to begin with."
"The Defensive Patent License (DPL) prevents members from suing each other for patent infringement unless they are attacked by another member who breaches the DPL first."
Cover image: Wikipedia