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Article

Patent Board Says Red Hat’s Portfolio Is Valuable

It’s up 16 Scorecard slots since November based on the Board’s perceptions of industry impact and technology strength

Who knew?

Turns out that Red Hat, which loathes patents - since they're inconvenient to its business model - and would love to stop Microsoft from getting its hands on Novell's patents, has the 50th strongest patent portfolio in the IT industry.

At least the Patent Board, which tracks the US and European portfolios of the top 2,700 high-tech firms and regularly publishes a Patent Scorecard, thinks so.

Red Hat, which now has 137 US patents, describes its interests as purely defensive "to deter those not interested in the success of open source software from using their patents to attack Red Hat and the open source community."

It's up 16 Scorecard slots since November based on the Board's perceptions of industry impact and technology strength.

Industry impact is supposed to indicate the extent to which others are building on a portfolio of US utility patents as compared to the total set of utility patents, and technology strength is supposed to indicate the overall strength of the company's patent portfolio holdings with a combined measure of quality and quantity.

Red Hat made a Patent Promise years ago saying the technology covered by any of our patents could be used by anyone in any software distributed under some of the open source licenses like the GPL and LGPL barring patent litigation against Red Hat.

No specific patents were mentioned.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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