US patent lawsuits now dominated by ‘trolls’ -study

For the first time,individuals and companies that do not themselves make anything -commonly known as “patent trolls” – are bringing the majority ofU.S. patent lawsuits, according to a study by a California lawprofessor.

The sharp increase in this type of lawsuit serves as amilestone likely to exacerbate the tension over patent issuesand increase calls for patent reform and scrutiny of the system.

This year, about 61 percent of all patent lawsuits filedthrough Dec. 1 were brought by patent-assertion entities, orindividuals and companies that work aggressively andopportunistically to assert patents as a business model ratherthan build their own technology, according to a paper by ColleenChien, a law professor at Santa Clara University.

Innovation, really.