[cryptography] NSA's position in the dominance stakes

James A. Donald jamesd at echeque.com
Thu Nov 18 16:33:43 EST 2010


On 2010-11-19 6:07 AM, John Levine wrote:
>>> Go to
>>> http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/texas/txedce/2:2007cv00216/103383/112/
>>> and read the document.  It says that the case is being dismissed
>>> because the parties have settled.  It says nothing about why either
>>> party chose to settle.
>
> Having been involved in a fair number of patent suits, I can tell you
> it's much more venal.
>
> Certicom: You're infringing our patents.
>
> Sony: They're junk.
>
> Certicom: Prove it.  See you in court.
>
> Sony, to their lawyers: How much will this cost?
>
> Lawyers: This case is pretty simple, about $100K/yr for three years.
>
> Sony: Yow!
>
> Sony, to Certicom: If we pay you $100K, will you go away?
>
> Certicom: Deal!

But if Sony paid Certicom, certicom would be crowing from the rooftops, 
since such a concession could be used to extract further concessions 
from all Sony's competitors.

So more likely what happened is:

Certicom: You're infringing our patents.

Sony: They're junk.

Certicom: Prove it.  See you in court.

Sony, to their lawyers: How much will this cost Certicom

Lawyers:  Depends. If you are trying to spin it out, perhaps a 100K per 
year, for as many years as you like.  If you are prepared to ramp up the 
action, perhaps ten million a year, for as many years as you like.

Sony to their accountants:  How long can Certicom hold out at one 
million per year?




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