This ones a bit a doozy, so bear with me if you can.
Pardon me, but what the hell is going on here? Do companies spend more time, effort, and money on slapping their competitors with frivolous lawsuits rather than trying to improve their current products and developer future ones? Am I the only person who thinks this goes beyond sheer stupidity and dwells deep into the category of severely brain damaged?
Sorry, but this is a little frightening. Just think; if Alcatel is now considered to be the legal patent holder of the MP3 compression scheme, what's to stop them from suing other companies that paid licensing fees to Fraunhofer, who has been regarded since day one as the legal and legitimate patent holder of the MP3 format. Could Alcatel sue Apple or Creative for using MP3 technology they had licensed from Fraunhofer? Or worse yet, could Alcatel sue Linux users who have MP3 compression/playback software loaded onto their box? Maybe they should sue the RIAA and its member companies who sell their music on-line in MP3 format.
A Microsoft spokesperson sums it all in a nice little compressed audible quote that we cannot refer to as an MP3 for reasons of legal insanity/stupidity.
"today's outcome is disappointing for us and for the hundreds of other companies who have licensed MP3 technology," and that they are "concerned that this decision opens the door for Alcatel-Lucent to pursue action against hundreds of other companies who purchased the rights to use MP3 technology from Fraunhofer, the industry-recognized rightful licensor."
Oh, and one last thing to add to my time line of events.
Microsoft plans to appeal the decision.