Patent Trolls

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Back to The Truth About Patent Trolls

There is no widely agreed upon definition of 'Patent Troll', because it is often used interchangeably with the terms Patent Assertion Entities and Non-Practicing Entities, whereas we make a distinction between these three terms. For our study, we define Patent Trolls as a 'person or entity that attempts to enforce patent rights against accused infringers far beyond the patent's actual value'[1]. Their asked damages are far beyond the market value of the patent. This is a tactic used to scare small businesses in the initial demand letter, when pressing them to pay the fee to license the patent.

Hypothesis: Patent trolls will generally push for settlements and jury trials.

In all of the cases eDekka filed in 2015, each one asked for trial by jury. However, another company that is considered a big patent troll, Oberalis does not file for trial by jury.

In cases that involve educational institutions (PAEs/NPEs but not patent trolls), the educational institution doesn't ask for a jury trial. In fact, the company being sued responds to the complaint with a jury demand. Some examples of this:

  • Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation v. Apple Inc
  • Trustees of Boston University v. Everlight Electronics Co
  • The Regents of the University of California v. Micro Therapeutics Inc. et al
  • Cambridge University Press et al v. Patton et al