All businesses have software patent risk
Even though you may be a simple user of other people's software, you are open to being sued by patent holders. They will target all kinds of businesses, large and small, and even private individuals, on the grounds that the software you use is violating their patents, and therefore you too have broken the law, simply by using that software.
Examples of software patents used against non-software companies
- 2008 State of Software Patents, a report by Ben Klemens showing that the victims are frequently non-software companies such as CDW Corp., Motorola, the Green Bay Packers, OfficeMax, Caterpillar, Kraft Foods, ADT Security Services, AutoNation, Florida Crystals Corp., HearUSA, Tire Kingdom, and Boca Raton Resort and Club.
- Divine e-commerce patents - an example of a patent troll that attacked non-software companies.
- Webvention LLC's patent on the "rollover menu".
Related pages on ESP Wiki
- Microsoft - frequently fined for infringing software patents.
- Costs are astronomically disproportionate for SMEs and individuals
- Patent-Litigation Weekly: The Photo-Sharing Files
- Lists of the most targetted companies
- The CIO and Patent Lawsuits, 28 Aug 2010, Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols ("even if no one in your company ever writes a line of code. In the 21st century, no business can count on being safe from patent lawsuits.")