Forum Index > Gear Talk > Backcountry.com sues anyone using the word backcountry in their business
Previous :: Next Topic  
Author Message
moonspots
Happy Curmudgeon



Joined: 03 Feb 2007
Posts: 2086 | TRs
Location: North Dakota
moonspots
  Top

Happy Curmudgeon
PostThu Nov 07, 2019 5:31 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Bosterson wrote:
Do local independent gear shops even still exist? Sigh

backcountrygear.com in Eugene, Oregon. My 1st "go-to" gear shop. A VERY well stocked physical presense, and great online. My next favorite is Moosejaw.

--------------
"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
BigBrunyon
Member
Member


Joined: 19 Mar 2015
Posts: 582 | TRs
Location: the fitness gyms
BigBrunyon
  Top

Member
PostSun Nov 10, 2019 6:49 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
I'm continuing to use the word backcountry!! They ain't sued me yet!!! Say something!!

--------------
i ALWAYS camp at the upper lake!
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
moonspots
Happy Curmudgeon



Joined: 03 Feb 2007
Posts: 2086 | TRs
Location: North Dakota
moonspots
  Top

Happy Curmudgeon
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 5:57 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
BigBrunyon wrote:
I'm continuing to use the word backcountry!! They ain't sued me yet!!! Say something!!

lol.gif  up.gif

Backcounty's  CEO "apology" didn't impress me. And I've removed the goat from the window in my shop. I do feel bad for the folks who work there and are (probably) taking the brunt of the backlash via phone/chat.

--------------
"Out, OUT you demons of Stupidity"! - St Dogbert, patron Saint of Technology
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
RandyHiker
Snarky Member



Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 6614 | TRs
Location: Bellevue at the moment.
RandyHiker
  Top

Snarky Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 7:32 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
FWIW: They've now fired the law firm that was doing the suing

https://gearjunkie.com/backcountry-fires-law-firm-drops-lawsuits-rebuilding-relationships

But I think they've done a ton of damage to their brand, and it take a while to recover, if ever. 

To me it points up one of the aspects of the way the trademark and patent office works in the states.  Essentially they do virtually nothing in terms of research when granting patents and trademarks.  This leaves it up to individual trademark holders to enforce trademarks via civil lawsuits.  It is only in court where  the validity of a trademark is examined in detail and then only  if the defending party chooses to go to court rather than settle.  Since going to court is extremely expensive,  most firms choose to settle.

The Marquette Backcountry Ski firm is amazing in that they chose to fight rather than settle.   They won in the court of public opinion.  But I'll bet their legal fees have eaten up all their profits.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Jan 2002
Posts: 14180 | TRs
Location: Back Again Like A Bad Penny
Malachai Constant
  Top

Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 8:13 am 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
RandyHiker wrote:
To me it points up one of the aspects of the way the trademark and patent office works in the states.  Essentially they do virtually nothing in terms of research when granting patents and trademarks.  This leaves it up to individual trademark holders to enforce trademarks via civil lawsuits.  It is only in court where  the validity of a trademark is examined in detail and then only  if the defending party chooses to go to court rather than settle.  Since going to court is extremely expensive,  most firms choose to settle.

I have to defend my occupation. First Trademarks:

There are several types. First, common law trademarks are not examined at all. Second, State trademarks are simply registered without examination. State and common law trademarks must be proven in court and do not have a presumption of validity. Federal trademarks are examined but are subject to opposition and cancellation actions in the patent office. Challenges are often a slam dunk if the evidence exists and prudent companies and attorneys drop the mark. If they have been used for a number of years without challenge they have a stronger presumption. Overzealous attorneys can give the process a bad name.

Next Patents:

Patents are examined in the Patent Office usually over a two year period. The quality of examination is dependent on the field of art and the particular examiner. Examination is usually quite good for simple mechanical inventions. It is terrible for complex inventions such as software and semiconductors. An experienced examiner in these field can easily get a 6 figure income in industry or law firm. Many examiners are using their position for job training. I have had had examiners ask me to get them a job at my client of firm. Due to the America Invents Act patents are open to challenge in the patent office more easily than before. IMO patents are pretty much useless now unless you have millions available to defend them. Large companies such as MSFT, BA, or Intel have portfolios with tens of thousands of patents or hire specialized companies to defend and inforce patents against competitors. The day of the individual inventor is long gone.

--------------
"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
RandyHiker
Snarky Member



Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 6614 | TRs
Location: Bellevue at the moment.
RandyHiker
  Top

Snarky Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 12:24 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant wrote:
The day of the individual inventor is long gone.

What I've observed personally in the software business is individual "inventors" file for a wide range of patents for methods already in common usage.  Then "patent vulture" firms buy up those patents and file lawsuits in Marshall county Texas.  The jury pool in Marshall county has a very low rate of high school  graduation and isn't well suited to evaluating a technical patent on its merits.

By the time I left MSFT, we had stopped filing patents for software innovations and instead adopted a practice of blogging about innovations.  Blog posts are far cheaper to deploy than a patent filing, but provide an essentially equivalent level of protection from "patent vulture" firms suing in hope of a settlement on undisclosed terms.

The lack of even basic evaluation by the patent office when granting patents is well illustrated by the "Method of swinging a swing" patent

https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2178-boy-takes-swing-at-us-patents/
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Send e-mail Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Jan 2002
Posts: 14180 | TRs
Location: Back Again Like A Bad Penny
Malachai Constant
  Top

Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 2:46 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
That is what we call a “protective publication” , it prevents another from patenting your invention. Agree about software patents SCOTUS rulings have just about eliminated valid ones. I hade an examiner one who did not know what an “object” is in software, he kept insisting it was a physical object. I ceased having any individual inventors as clients back in the 90’s.

--------------
"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
texasbb
Misplaced Texan



Joined: 30 Mar 2009
Posts: 938 | TRs
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
texasbb
  Top

Misplaced Texan
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 8:07 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant wrote:
Agree about software patents SCOTUS rulings have just about eliminated valid ones.

Thank goodness.  Software is just algorithms and algorithms are just math.  It's ridiculous to allow patenting such.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Cyclopath
Faster than light



Joined: 20 Mar 2012
Posts: 3269 | TRs
Location: Seattle
Cyclopath
  Top

Faster than light
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 9:17 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Software isn't just math.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Jan 2002
Posts: 14180 | TRs
Location: Back Again Like A Bad Penny
Malachai Constant
  Top

Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 9:41 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
True dat, some software is intensely clever and economical and takes creativity to make. In addition most devices we use are a combination of software and hardware which creates something previously unknown. The famous gif patent using LZW compression was only a few lines of FORTRAN and made the early internet practical.

--------------
"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
texasbb
Misplaced Texan



Joined: 30 Mar 2009
Posts: 938 | TRs
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
texasbb
  Top

Misplaced Texan
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 9:59 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Cyclopath wrote:
Software isn't just math.

"I am told that the courts are trying to make a distinction between mathematical algorithms and nonmathematical algorithms. To a computer scientist, this makes no sense, because every algorithm is as mathematical as anything could be. An algorithm is an abstract concept unrelated to physical laws of the universe."  --Donald Knuth (See here.)

More here and here for a start.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
texasbb
Misplaced Texan



Joined: 30 Mar 2009
Posts: 938 | TRs
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
texasbb
  Top

Misplaced Texan
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 10:04 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant wrote:
some software is intensely clever and economical and takes creativity to make.

Which makes it more like a story than an invention.  Software should be protected by copyright, not patent.

Malachai Constant wrote:
The famous gif patent using LZW compression was only a few lines of FORTRAN and made the early internet practical.

But the underlying algorithm was discovered, not invented.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Cyclopath
Faster than light



Joined: 20 Mar 2012
Posts: 3269 | TRs
Location: Seattle
Cyclopath
  Top

Faster than light
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 10:19 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
texasbb wrote:
"I am told that the courts are trying to make a distinction between mathematical algorithms and nonmathematical algorithms. To a computer scientist, this makes no sense, because every algorithm is as mathematical as anything could be. An algorithm is an abstract concept unrelated to physical laws of the universe."  --Donald Knuth (See here.)

More here and here for a start.

I'm a software developer.  The above is poetry, not a description of reality.

Software is behavior.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Cyclopath
Faster than light



Joined: 20 Mar 2012
Posts: 3269 | TRs
Location: Seattle
Cyclopath
  Top

Faster than light
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 10:20 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
texasbb wrote:
But the underlying algorithm was discovered, not invented.

This is true in exactly the same way as saying a child is discovered not born, they're ultimately just made of DNA which is a 4 letter alphabet.
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
Malachai Constant
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Jan 2002
Posts: 14180 | TRs
Location: Back Again Like A Bad Penny
Malachai Constant
  Top

Member
PostMon Nov 11, 2019 10:51 pm 
Reply to topic Reply with quote
Machines are patentable, by operation of Boolean algebra they can be translated into a series of interconnected logic gates. The gates are easily translated into software which is arguably an algorithm. Under this criteria nothing is patentable. Of course modern software is enormously more complex than linear algorithms. Similarly all music can be translated through Fourier transforms into a series of sine waves. If you pursue this to far you enter into a realm of existential philosophy. Where you may not want to enter. If existence is me a rely a series of equations what is reality, is there right, or wrong? Is got the ghost in the machine? Etc all we are is dust in the wind  clown.gif

--------------
"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
Back to top
View user's profile Search for posts by this user Send private message Reply to topic Reply with quote
  Display:     All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Forum Index > Gear Talk > Backcountry.com sues anyone using the word backcountry in their business
  Happy Birthday roos2er!
Jump to:   
Search this topic:

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
You cannot attach files in this forum
You can download files in this forum
   Use Disclaimer Powered by phpBB Privacy Policy