Pablo Chavez, Google’s public policy director, addressed attendees of the Technology Policy Institute’s conference today. In a question & answer period, Chavez was asked to touch upon the recent patent wars that have become increasingly infamous. Chavez responded that Google is through with patents altogether stating:
“We think that these patent wars are not helpful to consumers. They’re not helpful to the marketplace. They’re not helpful to innovation.”
Google is no stranger to speaking out against patents. In 2009 they stated in a brief to the Supreme Court along with other companies like Bank of America and Morgan Stanley:
“ The recent surge in patents on abstract ideas such as how to run a business or software that merely implements such methods has not promoted innovation in the financial services or information technology fields — to the contrary, such patents create a drag on innovation.”
In response to Google’s stance on patents and their hindrance, Rick Lane (Senior vice president of government affairs, News Corp) said:
“If we tried to do that as a content community, all heck would break loose, we’d be accused of stifling innovation protecting old business models. What about all the investments that have been made in iPad apps?”
Only time will tell what becomes of this patent war saga. What is your opinion? Do you think patents hurt consumers?