Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Monday, July 2, 2012

From Across the Pond: A View of Posner

The Guardian's John Naughton looks at Richard Posner's dismissal of Apple's patent infringement lawsuit against Google here. He says "there are good grounds to argue that Judge Posner is "the most infuriating man on the surface of the planet, but they are not the ones you'd expect....[T]he problem with Posner is not his awfulness, but the reverse: his astonishing intelligence, energy and provocative creativity."

Mr. Naughton says Judge Posner cut to the chase, noting that Apple had no legal argument, and that neither side had shown damages. Says Mr. Naughton,

This is a landmark judgment, one of those moments when someone – in this case an eminent judge rather than a small child – points out that the emperor is indeed stark naked. Patent wrangling between technology companies has become both pathological and pointless. It is also a gross abuse of intellectual property law that uses the courts as tools for gaining competitive advantage. The people who should be deciding whether Apple's phones are better – more functional, reliable, easier to use – than Motorola's are consumers, not judges. By striking a blow for common sense in what had become a madhouse, Posner has set a really encouraging precedent. The only downside is that he will now probably write a book about it. And I bet it will be a bloody good read too. Some people are just too annoying for words.

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