I think patent trolls are bad things for the tech market or any market for that matter. They represents the worst elements of the system. And the system needs to be reformed. But at the same thing, reformation of the patent system does to negate one thing: the need to have patents or the need to innovate.
I fault Google for not protecting Android and not having the leadership to foresee a future in which rivals will not be willing to allow Android device makers to simply usurp the technology they developed by competitors.
In an interview with Techcrunch, Kent Walker, Google's General Counsel, seems to be suggesting as much. On top of that, I suggest that Google fire Walker for his ineptitude. It would have been under his leadership to secure the Nortel patents and he failed to do that. I see this interview as his attempt to cover his mistakes.
Having lost the bidding with to rivals, he now consider patents to be "government-granted monopolies". Well, duh. Then having no patents to back up their own OS, he goes on to suggest that some patents should not be valid without providing specifics. But Walker has to understand that the Android lawsuits are not about patent trolls, especially in the case of Microsoft. If he does think the Microsoft situation and patent trolls are the same thing, then it underscores my earlier point: Larry Page, get rid of this guy now!
Google's history regarding other's intellectual properties and patents are clear. You'll have to decide which side you come down on and make an honest assessment. If something path to your final product or process is blocked by a patent, you have one of two choices. Fight to invalidate it or innovate around it.
At the moment, Google has done neither and outside of a few sorts, Google's partners could be feeling pretty sore about the whole situation. Now, if Google decides to foot some of the payments and legal fees....
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