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The stimulating effect of patents

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Nokia, Qualcomm in patent tussle describes the battles being waged between Qualcomm and Nokia over cell phone-related patents. IP proponents claim that the patent system "stimulates innovation". IBut it's pretty apparent that what is being stimulated is legal battles.

"The companies have been disputing royalty payments since a 2001 agreement expired this year." "Qualcomm sued Nokia in a Wisconsin court on April 2. With its new action in the same court, Nokia said it does not believe its products infringe Qualcomm's patents, and it filed counter assertions claiming six Nokia patents were touched by Qualcomm chipsets. The company is seeking damages and an injunction against those chipsets." 
"Over the past 19 months Qualcomm has filed 11 patent litigation cases against Nokia seeking damages and injunctions," said Rick Simonson, Nokia's chief financial officer. "Nokia has now filed its first counter action to address Qualcomm's unauthorized use of Nokia technology."
"This is part of a broader skirmish that dates to October 2005, when Nokia and five other companies complained to the European Union about Qualcomm's business practices."
"Qualcomm, the world's No. 2 chipmaker for mobile phones, wants to renew terms of the 2001 licensing pact; Nokia wants to reduce its payments to Qualcomm."
"Last year, in a lawsuit filed in Delaware, Nokia said Qualcomm fails to adhere to global licensing rules and asked that Qualcomm be prevented from seeking redress in other legal complaints against Nokia."
"Qualcomm has also accused Nokia of patent infringement in federal court in San Diego, before the U.S. International Trade Commission as well as in courts in the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy."

Such a productive use of these companies' resources!

Stephan Kinsella is an attorney in Houston, director of the Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom, and editor of Libertarian Papers.

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