Patent trolls are far too common in the technology industry, but the Supreme Court is at least taking one major step towards reducing the number of patent disputes. The court has ruled that patenting an idea is not allowed, and while it would be possible to patent ways for the implementation of that idea, the idea itself cannot be protected. Certain technology companies have been patenting little more than an idea that is thought of, which prevents other companies from actually moving forward with new devices and software.
There are companies that exist solely for the purpose of filing, owning, and protecting patents. Those companies will be affected by the Supreme Court’s decision, but this week’s ruling doesn’t completely solve the issue. It has been widely argued that most patents that are filed for software simply should not be allowed, and that the US Patent Office should look more carefully at the patents being granted.
At the very least, the Supreme Court has upheld the notion that patents should be reserved for things that have been implemented, not just ideas. Unless a company is actually using a piece of technology, it should not be filing patents for it.