The Patent Foundation
For the past
few months, I have dedicated my time (50 hours a week) in the pursuit
of bringing awareness to companies and individuals about patent
I have been
contacting people in Academia, Government, and Technology companies
to ask for assistance in finding prior art.
Through my active
email, phone, and FAX campaign, I have talked to many of the "Internet
Greats", the people who actually developed the technology that
evolved into the Internet as we know it today.
Some of those
I contacted were very concerned over Acacia and other companies
attempts at trying to interpret their patents to claim ownership
to the downloading & streaming of audio & video files from
a web server. Others were apathetic in not replying to my emails
or just not interested enough to help, since these problems don't
fall into their backyard.
For the prior
art leads that I do find, I present them to the defendants in litigation.
Part of their struggle is getting people to come forward to provide
Expert Testimony, a time consuming effort that keeps most people
from not willing to participate.
Instead of working
on my side ventures, or doing consulting work, I have focused my
time on FightThePatent.com because my conscious tells me this is
something that I must do.
For the past
week, I have been formulating a plan to expand my activism, to create
an organization whose charter is to Fight against Patent Abuse.
cases extend far beyond the current focus of audio/video downloads.
Other patent holders are targeting companies for having shopping
carts, doing e-commerce, using frames on a web page for navigation,
using plugins within a web page, and it goes on and on.
I have started to formulate the idea of creating a
non-profit (501c3) organization called Fight The Patent Foundation.
will help to provide defense support for companies who are being
targeted by patent holders. I have received emails from many Webmasters
who say they have received "information packets" or C&D
letters and don't know how to respond because they don't have enough
resources to try and fight.
The search for
prior art is the Holy Grail of searches to invalidate a patent infringement
claim. By finding prior art, evidence that the patented idea already
existed one year prior to the patent filing, is the way to defend
against a patent attack.
witnesses to provide testimony and evidence is hard, because it
many times requires money to pay for their time. A company that
is trying to defend itself will have their money tied up in hiring
While it would
be great to think that people would come forward to help, the reality
is most will not because of their complacency with their own lives,
to not have to involve themselves in others.
was a dot-com that had Jeff Bezos and Tim O'Reilly as investors.
The premise of the site was to put a bounty/reward for people who
provide prior art that helps a case. From reading about their website
and contacting the CEO/Founder, they did accomplish some good, but
ran out of money.
The FTP Foundation
proposes to provide expert witnesses and evidence to help the defense
cases through the idea of "Paying it Forward". I saw this
movie a week after starting FightThePatent.com and it heavily influenced
will present to potential expert witnesses and sources for prior
art, a reason to become motivated, to help stop a patent abuse case
that has wide reaching ramifications to all websites.
provide a bounty or reward for someone, FTP Foundation would rather
solicit people for help by providing donations to the person's favorite
charity in their name.
The idea is
based on the principal that people are successful in their own lives,
and are not motivated by money to help. They would be motivated
to provide expert testimony and evidence because they have been
made aware of the patent abuse case and its ramifications on all
websites / companies, and would want to help to defend against a
patent attack. In return for knowing they did the "right thing",
a charitable contribution is given in their name to a school, library,
or any non-profit organization in their community that allows them
to "pay forward" their time and efforts to helping others.
will be seeking high profile technology/business individuals to
be on the Board of Directors. Having an impressive Board of Directors
of "Internet Great" will further help to provide credibility
and reason for expert witness to come forward.
I have already
started to process of contacting people to be on the Board, and
waiting on their answer. I believe in this effort and have started
to look into the process of creating a non-profit organization.
The only way
that FTP Foundation can launch successfully and be effective is
to have a stellar Board of Directors and donations from concerned companies and individuals.
The same spark
of Internet Activism that started me on FightThePatent.com, is the
same energy that I bring to the FTP Foundation. I am prepared to
make FTP Foundation into a strong organization that will grow beyond
me and become a new movement in the way people can come together
to fight against patent abuse cases.
If you are interested
in becoming involved in any kind of capacity, please feel free to