The founder of Uniloc, the company suing Minecraft over patent infringement, defended the suit today, calling the emails he received from Minecraft fans disgusting and decried accusations that he is a "patent troll."
The founder of Uniloc, the company suing Mojang over patent infringement, defended the suit today, calling the emails he received from Minecraft fans disgusting and decrying accusations that he is a "patent troll."
In a blog post, Ric Richardson first pointed out that while he is the founder of Uniloc and the person behind some of the original technology, he is no longer a "principle" at the company and can't speak for them. He is also not the inventor of the patent at dispute with Mojang, nor did he have anything to do with the suit.
Over the weekend, Markus "Notch" Persson took to Twitter to point out that his company is being sued by the Luxembourg-based Uniloc for alleged patent infringement in the development of the Android version of Minecraft. The suit centers around the game's use of a certain form of copy protection.
Richardson wrote that he awoke this morning to a large number of emails decrying Uniloc's suit. While he's not involved, Richardson did take the time to discuss the issues involved.
One expression that comes to my mind is the saying that having a great technology without a patent is like having a Lamborghini and leaving the keys in it.
Well back in 1992 when I invented the 216 Uniloc technology it truly was unique. No one had done this before. In the early 90's we did "try and buy" cover disk campaigns on magazines that travelled the world. In fact if most software designers are honest they will agree that the idea of locking serial numbers to specific machines came from products they saw that somehow link back to those early days.
Yes. I filed a patent back then.
Well I'm sorry if you don't think its right to protect yourself. I think it's irresponsible to involve others in an enterprise when you don't do everything you reasonably can to protect their interests as well as your own.
Just think about the logic here. The people complaining about the law suits here are complaining that a company is trying to protect it's own right to make a living from a technology that the patent office has verified as unique and novel. If you disagree then track the patent office and voice your problems with the patents as they are published.
And yet, the technology in question is a system that stops people from pirating their software and helps them make money. Well if you think it's so unfair, don't use the tech. Do something else. No one is forcing you to use the technology.
It amazes me that people complain about paying a royalty for a technology that stops up to a third of a software companies sales from being lost to piracy. What are you saying? "Its all right to steal from Uniloc as long as it helps stop pirates stealing from me?"
Richardson went on to say that he is not a patent troll, that he is the inventor of the 216 patent, that he worked nearly two decades on perfecting that technology, and that he is not a "money hungry megalomaniac."
"Further, I think it's a sad thing to see people making inflammatory remarks from the cheap seats," he wrote. "The Internet can be a real disappointing place when people can mouth off without taking responsibility for their actions. Just sad."