Monday, March 12, 2012

Yahoo!: a sad day for all innovators

Today Yahoo! filed a suit against Facebook for patent infringement.  As you might know Yahoo! has a new CEO, Scott Thompson, and along with a rumor of impending big layoffs there has been increasing talks within Yahoo! about suing Facebook.  In a patent infringement suit that was filed in San Francisco, Yahoo! alleges that Facebook stole privacy, advertising, customization, messaging, and social networking technology to create its social networking site.

Yahoo! sues Facebook;
a sad day for everyone in Silicon Valley
This looks like Yahoo! is committing itself back in to the race.  The problem is that it's the race to the bottom.  Just when you thought Yahoo! might be getting ready to bounce back from series of failures, this is yet another downer for Yahoo!.

People in software industry acknowledge that current software patent system is broken.  Core idea of patent is not to stifle the innovation.  It is to encourage sharing of ideas and building on someone else's idea.  However, software patents are used to stifle innovation by allowing patent trolls to trade idea-only patents and to go after companies that are actually innovating.

It's really sad to see Yahoo! choosing the path to become a patent troll.  It's especially sadder to see it happen with new CEO who is supposed to turn Yahoo! around for the better.

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