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Software Government The Courts News

Trend Micro Draws Boycott Over AV Patent Case 151

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the going-the-way-of-the-scosco dept.
Linux.com is reporting that in addition to the bad press, Trend Micro's patent case against Barracuda Networks' use of ClamAV has drawn an apparent boycott of Trend Micro. "Dutch free knowledge and culture advocacy group ScriptumLibre called for 'a worldwide boycott on Trend Micro products.' In its news release, ScriptumLibre summarizes the case, with its chairman, Wiebe van der Worp, describing Trend Micro's actions as 'well beyond the borders of decency.' The ScriptumLibre site includes link to free graphics that supporters can add to their Web pages to show their support and a call for IT professionals that provides a links to help people to educate themselves about the case and suggests a series of actions that people can take in the boycott." Linux.com and Slashdot are both owned by SourceForge Inc.
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Trend Micro Draws Boycott Over AV Patent Case

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  • by gazbo (517111) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:20PM (#22385020)
    What you mean is a couple of random people have mooted a boycott. Well I'm sure Trend will issue a profit warning to investors post haste.
    • by gad_zuki! (70830)
      Not just random but a dutch free culture group! Stop the presses! Also college students are skipping class for the insert_some_injustice_here! And as we all know college students love to going to class and free dutch culture groups love buying Trend Micro!

    • by mwvdlee (775178)
      I'm Dutch.
      I know several Dutch "freedom-of-whatever" advocacy groups yet I've never heard of either this group or the person behind it.
      They're nobody.
    • We'll know it's REALLY bad when/if their name gets changed to Trimmed Micro...
  • by Marcion (876801) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:22PM (#22385048) Homepage Journal
    If you want to see how the open source world responds to threats, look no further than SCO. Many Linux fans are also Unix admins at work, and many of them got their employers to switch from SCO to *anything other Unix-like OS* in response to the threats. Now SCO is in bankruptcy and not likely to come out.
    • by Tom9729 (1134127)
      While I agree with that, I think the fact that SCO stopped producing anything significant and started hiring lawyers also had something to do with their increasingly dire financial situation.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by houstonbofh (602064)
      While I would not go as far as to say that was the cause only of the SCO downfall... A number of FOSS geeks are influential in a lot of purchasing decisions for both business and home users. And there are a LOT of good AV programs.
    • What about the one's that don't? I think we should boycott the law.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by InlawBiker (1124825)
      As a former SCO Unix admin at work I was using their products the whole time. Although I did hate them for their draconian licensing scheme, they didn't go out of business due to admin lobbying. They went out of business because Linux came along and offered a competitive product at a better price (free).

      It was all about the money. Isn't it always? We could buy cheap PC hardware and run SCO, and even though I hated it, it was much cheaper than buying an expensive Sun machine and a support license.

      Even if
      • by Gazzonyx (982402)
        I don't know about Sun... I've run OpenSolaris this summer for ZFS (which, BTW absolutely rocks!), and it felt like baby sitting a 4 year old. However, Sun does sell awesome hardware/OS packages (albeit very expensive) and really does have a nice modular enterprise software stack. I think they'll end up becoming an IBM, grow old and respected community member making good revenue consulting and doing high end systems. Then again, they are still holding their own with Java and netbeans (ironically, IBM's e
    • by mpe (36238)
      If you want to see how the open source world responds to threats, look no further than SCO. Many Linux fans are also Unix admins at work, and many of them got their employers to switch from SCO to *anything other Unix-like OS* in response to the threats.

      This could also have had something to do with SCO not doing much to develop their product and Linux being able to run SCO binaries.
  • by Tom9729 (1134127) <tom9729&gmail,com> on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:28PM (#22385104) Homepage
    Isn't it time people start boycotting _all_ commercial antivirus programs?

    The business model for most of these companies is nothing more than extortion (ie. pay up on your Norton subscription or we'll trash your Windows install).

    Many OEM computers come with AV programs out of the box that are only good for several months. My aunt's computer was like this (a Dell). She's not very technical, so she didn't realize that she had to pay to keep something working that came free with her computer. After the "free trial" was up, Norton silently died leaving her computer vulnerable to all sorts of nasties (no firewall, on AOL dialup, yuck). The Norton uninstall program often does not work, leaving many of Nortons "hooks" still installed in the OS.

    I've said it many times, all you need is a router and some common sense (not using Internet Explorer helps). If you really can't help clicking on "free ipod" ads, then fine use an antivirus program, but for god's sake don't use Norton, Trend Micro, or any of the subscription based crap that's out there.

    And yes, I realize this article is not about Norton, but Norton and Trend Micro are in the same boat IMO.

    The only good thing Trend Micro has ever made is their "House Call" virus scanner in Java. It's a nice way to clean up trashed pc's without having to install software (most PC's have Java already installed nowadays).
    • by gazbo (517111)
      After the "free trial" was up, Norton silently died

      And lo, everyone on the website knew not to believe a single word you say, from now unto eternity.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Atti K. (1169503)
      The only antivirus I ever used, since the DOS era up to now on XP is F-Prot. No bloat, small and lightweight. Never had a virus. And of course, a router and common sense helps a lot.
      • by CannonballHead (842625) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:47PM (#22385350)

        Unfortunately, a lot of people don't have "common sense." "Common sense" is quite uncommon among people who haven't grown up with computers. My mom, if it were not for me, would have no clue how to prevent viruses, adware, spyware, etc.

        Of course, I remove Norton almost automatically when fixing computers, because it slows it down almost as much as a virus, in my experience.

        • by mjwx (966435)

          "Common sense" is quite uncommon among people who haven't grown up with computers.

          Common sense is often uncommon among many people who _have_ grown up around computers. Just last week a 22 yr old came to me quiet concerned about a hoax virus email until I pointed out that 1. The AFP (Australian Federal Police) would not email them, 2. Spam is illegal so the AFP would not tell them to email everyone they knew (which they had already done) and 3. If it was so bad why hadn't this been on the news?

          This pers

      • by cHiphead (17854)
        Some of us want an ACTIVE SCANNER to run on our spouse and kid's pcs, is a new version of F-Prot finally doing this? I know the old free 'dos' version was only a file scanner. And I'm too lazy to go check. ;)

        Cheers.
    • Isn't it time people start boycotting _all_ commercial antivirus programs?

      Which ones on this list http://www.av-comparatives.org/ [av-comparatives.org] do you have in mind ?

      Or (to make it easier for you) which ones have you not ?
      • by micheas (231635)
        http://www.moonsecure.com/ [moonsecure.com] is what I recommend to people, it has on execute and uses clamav but you can plug the anti-virus engine of your choice in.
      • by micheas (231635)
        Interesting that ClamAV seems to be left out of most anti-virus comparisons,

        I would think that ClamAV would be sortof the defacto standard that you have to be better than to get someone to spend money. Oh, well we all know the reasons for it, but it sort of sucks anyways.

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by thejynxed (831517)

          "I would think that Kaspersky would be sortof the defacto standard that you have to be better than to get someone to spend money. Oh well, we all know the reasons for it, but ClamAV sort of sucks anyway."
          There, fixed that for you.
      • by jonwil (467024) on Monday February 11, 2008 @09:03PM (#22386964)
        AVG Anti-Virus is good. Free for personal use, isn't full of bloat like Symantec or Mcafee and installs cleanly (uninstalling I dont know about since I have never uninstalled it)
    • by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:41PM (#22385292)
      Commercial is not always bad. Some users do not have a clue, so they need to rent one from support. However, the pre-installed extortion-ware than does not cleanly remove is reason enough to boycott McAntic for life.
    • by Kazrath (822492) on Monday February 11, 2008 @07:33PM (#22385968)
      Wow what a load of crap. Norton AV does not silently die when it expires it becomes more noisy than Windows Vista. People are fully aware that the subscription is up and it gives you instructions on how to renew it. My Dell laptop has a HUGE popup every time I log in even when I just shut the lid and keep the thing powered on.

      You do realize that one of the major reasons you can pick up your cheapo dell/hp etc computer is the "Trialware" software on those boxes. They receive money to carry the software and in some cases receive more money to not carry someone else's software.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by coolbox (1011563)
        Seeing as we're on the subject of Symantec I'll clue you all in to what is probably the finest piece of Software they've ever released. It's called Norton_Removal_Tool.exe, Search for it on their site. It's guaranteed to increase your PC's reliability and speed by several orders of magnitude. It does this by blasting away every trace of their AV / Internet security bloatware.
    • The Norton uninstall program often does not work, leaving many of Nortons "hooks" still installed in the OS.

      I can attest to this. Not only does the uninstaller do this on occasion (especially if you're installing the last of several Norton products) but there are many viruses that target Norton specifically, disabling its AV functionality without uninstalling it. Either way, the next time you try to install another vendor's program the installer usually stops you in your tracks, proclaiming that Norton

    • by golodh (893453) on Monday February 11, 2008 @08:12PM (#22386432)
      I don't think this would be at all reasonable. Boycotting Trend Micro software is something I'd agree with though.

      However, much as I like Open Source Software in general, I consider it perfectly OK if people decide to use commercial, closed-source, anti-virus software. I would urge them to (re)consider using such software in favour of OSS, but if they wish, for whatever reason, to spend their money on closed-source anti-virus software, then best of luck to them (and the producers of closed-source AV software).

      What galls me in this case is the unfair way in which Trend Micro uses a blindingly obvious patent they somehow got their hands on to squeeze an OSS competitor out of the market. The patent, basically the idea of having a virus scanner on gateway servers to a network that scans incoming files as they are being transmitted, is of course trivial.

      Why?

      The idea that in order to prevent infected files from entering a network, you can do the checks "at the border", i.e. in the gateway server, is about as obvious as the idea of keeping a place dry by having a roof and 4 walls. Since the incoming files aren't stored on the gateway server but immediately forwarded, the only thing you can do is to stream the incoming file through an AV scanner. Patenting an "invention" like that is of course only possible in the US.

      Unfortunately the law says that even such patents have force, so an unscrupulous commercial AV vendor (Trend Micro) can use it to sue people for doing this.

      That's why I'd support a boycott of Trend Micro. Not because they're closed-source vendors, but because they behave like thugs.

      • by PitaBred (632671)
        Oohhh, thanks for the idea! *runs off to patent having 5 or more walls and a roof keeping the water out* I'm sure I can twist that to apply to any building that isn't a perfect rectangle...
    • by grommit (97148)

      pay up on your Norton subscription or we'll trash your Windows install

      I thought Norton automatically trashed your Windows install as soon as you install it...

    • Perhaps you could suggest an "active" antivirus program that is f/oss for windows? I mean, you can use clamwin, and there are tools to kludge it to scan every file accessed, but it's not exactly a clean setup. Just asking, as I may be missing something here... Also, Norton 2008 is much better than the versions from the past several years in terms of overhead, still not my fav though, and wouldn't touch MacAfee... I usually use AVG or Nod32 myself...
  • by davidsyes (765062) * on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:31PM (#22385140) Homepage Journal
    disturbing Trend?
  • Alternatives (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Solitude (30003) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:37PM (#22385220)
    I've been evaluating their client server product for SMB for a week now. I need about 75 licenses to replace our aging Symantec Corporate 7. I was a couple of days away from purchasing 75 licenses for one company and 10 for another, but then this. I vote with my dollars and if my research shows their claims are BS, they just lost 85 2-year licenses.
    • Re:Alternatives (Score:5, Interesting)

      by houstonbofh (602064) on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:45PM (#22385332)
      For the record, I do not think GriSoft has sued anyone this week. And AVG is quite good in the enterprise.
    • Barracuda Networks uses open source, but as far as I can may invalidate Trend's patent and that is a good thing for the open source community, but he's not doing it for the open source community, he's doing it to protect his companies profits. Barracuda Networks doesn't give away anything.

      When Sun got sued by NetApps over open source ZFS, which they do give away, did you see them run crying to the open source community for help?

      That is just one example of a real contributor being sued, but there I'm sure t
    • by Jagungal (36053)
      You should consider sticking with what you have or looking for other alternatives to Trend whether they do things like this or not. I have used both, Symantec in a previous job and now Trend in a new job. Virus protection in a corporate environment in a necessary evil - and Symantec's Corporate product is far better than the Trend rubbish.

      Trends latest Client Server product is a major memory hog and its web based administration tools can only be described as slow and painful.

      Trend acknowledges their probl
      • by Solitude (30003)
        I would love to stick with what I have, but let's just say they're not quite in compliance when it comes to licensing. Not to mention all the clients are set up in unmanaged mode and there's no central management server installed. I just started here so I'm trying to get them legit. At my previous job I inherited a NAV Corporate (7 or 8) install. It worked okay so I'm just looking for something like it that I can get running that's low maintenance so I can get moving on to other things. I've been evalu
    • I've been using Trend's products for years but have recently been swayed by ESET's NOD32 product. I've got it installed in two of my small business clients and so far it's very nice. Small footprint, nice interface, good centralized control. The only thing I'm not jazzed about yet is their Exchange product, which is fairly rudimentary.

      Oddly, I've begun moving away from Trend not because of these lawsuits, but because of the growing bloat of the client program, something Trend used to be quite good at com

      • by mpe (36238)
        Oddly, I've begun moving away from Trend not because of these lawsuits, but because of the growing bloat of the client program, something Trend used to be quite good at compared to McAfee and Symantec. My current installs of Trend OfficeScan clients consume about 70MB of RAM

        Maybe this is why Trend are suing. They are seeking revenue they have lost by producing a poor product.
  • by gilesjuk (604902) <giles,jones&zen,co,uk> on Monday February 11, 2008 @06:47PM (#22385358)
    Patents worked when it was about the small time inventor and they help start up companies. Once the industry giants and well established companies get hold of patents they use them in an anti-competitive manner.

    Software patents are the easiest to code around but can be the hardest to judge when they go to court.
    • by automandc (196618) on Monday February 11, 2008 @07:43PM (#22386096)
      The parent post is remarkably uninformed and reflects a poor understanding of the patent system and how it is used.

      First of all, patents have always been the domain of big business. One of the reasons many of the "founding fathers" were so suspicious of the patent system was that patents granted by the King were government granted monopolies given to particular large corporations, usually as a political favor. Whoever had the "patent" on the tea kettle became the only tea kettle maker in England until someone convinced the King otherwise. Thus, the U.S. Constitution was written to specifically limited to allow patents only "for a limited time" (Art. I, section 8, cl. 8). This was the answer to the uneasy tension between giving an incentive to create while not granting perpetual monopolies. Thomas Jefferson, himself an inventor, recognized that patents are a necessary incentive to invent, which enriches society.

      The antithesis of patents is trade secrets. If I have a trade secret (e.g., the mythical recipe of Coca-Cola), I don't have to tell any one else how to make it, and as long as I am really good at keeping the secret the world will never find out -- hence, there will always be only one "Coke" even though there might be other "colas".

      By having a patent system, the entire world gets to learn about your new invention, possibly improve on or build on your idea, and after a period of time they get to copy it themselves (or, they can license it and avoid the wait).

      Moreover, today's technology is such that, in many fields, it is simply unrealistic to think that real progress could be made by individuals working alone. For example, no person puttering in their basement is going to come up with a new process for fabbing microchips, or a new drug that is proven safe in humans -- those things require lots and lots of resources that only corporations or other institutions (e.g., Universities) can afford. Even Thomas Edison, the prototypical "inventor" had an army of technicians and assistants working for him by the end of his life.

      Patents are not "evil," nor are corporations that participate in the patent system. There are, however, a lot of bad patents out there right now (for a variety of reasons beyond the scope of this post). However, a company that has a "bad" patent cannot be faulted for trying to enforce it -- they are simply trying to protect their business interests (yes, business is cut-throat; get over it). Theoretically, the courts are supposed to take care of the bad patents. The fact that the courts may be failing is not the fault of the businesses that are seeking to protect their own interests.

      • by Bruce Perens (3872) * <bruce@perens.com> on Monday February 11, 2008 @07:57PM (#22386266) Homepage Journal
        What you wrote was the intent of the patent system, but not the reality. Engineers in tech companies are routinely told not to look at patents, because of the treble-damages problem or what I call the penalty for looking, damages three times as high for "knowing" infringement rather than unknowing. This makes the disclosure function of a patent inoperable. In addition, the claims of patents are written to capture as many possible applications as possible, even ones that had not been invented by the filer of the patent. This requires vagueness in the claims and further reduces the probability that they actually disclose anything of use. Indeed, the language generally used in patent claims is not particularly readable by engineers in the applicable discipline. One need only attempt to read a few patents for this to be clear. Thus, trade secret is not the antithesis of patent. A release of Open Source software is much closer to the antithesis of trade secret because it is a working and usually comprehensible implementation. Patents generally go hand-in-hand with closed-source software, and the source of that software is legally treated as a trade secret. Finally, in software, the duration of patents is so long compared to the duration of a generation of technology that there is no useful art remaining by the time the patent goes into the public domain.

        Surely you must be aware of these issues.

        Bruce

        • by automandc (196618)
          Yes, I am "aware" of these "issues." We both agree that it is a flaw in practice and not a flaw in design. The parent post to which I was responding suggested that all patents are ipso facto bad -- I was merely trying to point out that there is a sensible purpose behind the system and that purpose is not antithetical to corporate involvement.

          I agree that many modern patents are poorly written, and that the current state of the patent law provides every incentive to write them badly. I am a litigator (no

          • by Bruce Perens (3872) * <bruce@perens.com> on Monday February 11, 2008 @11:06PM (#22387962) Homepage Journal

            Go ahead, flame away, I've got tough skin. :)
            This is a rhetorical strategy: Label your opponents as flamers and some folks will see them that way. Spare us, please.

            The parent post to which I was responding suggested that all patents are ipso facto bad
            He's commenting about a software patent. That's what the article is about. There are compelling arguments that software patents are a mistake.

            However, I get a little weary of the "engineers are pure as driven snow" attitude.
            The pure-as-snow ones don't become expert witnesses and are not generally asked to testify for the prosecution in an infringement case. However, given the last time the USPTO prosecuted a case of perjury on the application (1974, and the enforcement department no longer exists), it doesn't seem that there is any incentive for purity.

            Patent and Trade secrets both seek to balance public good against personal gain
            Yes, but we're back to the intent again. In the case of software patents, rather than a balance all of the incentives seem to be for the bad actor.

            (2) Any company that thinks it can avoid a willful patent infringement claim by telling their engineers not to look at patents needs to question whether their corporate counsel is serving them or the other way around.
            I'm not sure the counsel think that's all that needs to be done to protect the company, but it is standard direction for engineers in tech companies. I've had it at HP (internal counsel) Pixar (Wilson Sonsini, Larry Sonsini was our direct counsel) and it is at the standard at many companies.

            I don't agree that patents are always longer than the current "generation of technology." Look at GIF, MP3, recalc etc.
            GIF is a legacy technology and the specific patent, the Unisys - Terry Welch algorithm to preload tables in the Lempel-Ziv compressor, was arguably trivial and was far from the state of the art when it expired. MP3 seems to be encumbered by patents still in force but not from its inventors. If I understand what recalc you are taking about, I'd make a case it is trivial and pre-existed the patent.
            • by automandc (196618)

              He's commenting about a software patent. That's what the article is about. There are compelling arguments that software patents are a mistake.

              The first paragraph of the parent was not specific to software patents. The fact that it begins "Patents" while the second paragraph specifies "Software patents" makes it clear that the author believes that all patents only "work" for the small inventor and so-called "start-ups." My response was on-point and not limited by a "software" only view of the universe. I agree that there are "compelling arguments" why software patents (at least in their present form) are a bad thing. However, I am not prepa

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by Bruce Perens (3872) *

                The first paragraph of the parent was not specific to software patents.

                You are asking for too much precision from a correspondent who is not used to arguing in a courtroom. The discussion here regarding patents is usually specific to software, and this discussion is specific to software.

                Those same experts, having never seen the patent before, can talk themselves into the position put forward by the attorneys presenting the case.

                I have a telephone lecture entitled you don't want me to write my report, and

                • by mpe (36238)
                  The last time I checked, the American Intellectual Property Law Association's Annual Economic Report was quoting USD$3 Million to USD$7 Million for defense in a single software patent case. For individuals and small or medium-sized enterprises, which make up the vast majority of the tech economy, there could only be a Phyrric victory because they'd exhaust their funds.

                  Or would be forced to go bankrupt before exhausiting their funds because of the effect such spending would have on their cashflow.
                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by automandc (196618)

                  You are asking for too much precision from a correspondent who is not used to arguing in a courtroom. The discussion here regarding patents is usually specific to software, and this discussion is specific to software.

                  I don't think it has anything to do with arguing in a courtroom -- precision matters in any context; viz., the complaints about how patents are currently written. While I certainly appreciate that software is the main topic, I do think the original poster meant to comment on the entire patent system -- I just don't see how else to read his post (particularly his reference to "inventor" instead of "developer").

                  I have a telephone lecture entitled you don't want me to write my report, and you don't want to ask why that I use for customers whose case my finding does not support. They appreciate hearing it that way, thank me, and pay my bill.

                  Sure, I have heard similar lectures (although I usually try to get a sense of whether that wil

                  • There is no shortage of perjury cases against experts.

                    Really? I don't doubt what you say, I am just interested in the source of your information. That is something I would like to hear more about.

                    It's a big deal in Canada right now. See this [canada.com] article.

                    I would need to know more about what you consider to be the criteria of a "good example" of a patent before I could even hazard a guess about whether a "good" software patent could exist. However, I would have to wonder whether the criteria for "good" are s

                    • by automandc (196618)
                      Oh, you mean forensics experts in criminal cases. That's a different story -- the stakes are different, the cases never "end" in the sense that people remain in prison, and there is an incentive for defense attorneys to work together to ferret out bad science by the main forensic experts. Moreover, we tend to believe that criminal trials are aimed at getting to a certain "truth" (he did it, or he didn't do it), and thus the science is presented as direct evidence of the ultimate question. In civil litiga
        • by mpe (36238)
          Indeed, the language generally used in patent claims is not particularly readable by engineers in the applicable discipline. One need only attempt to read a few patents for this to be clear.

          This indicates a failure of the patent issuing process. Were the application to be examined by a suitably qualified person you'd expect it to be rejected on the basis of "this is nonsense", "everyone, in the field, knows this, but it's called ...", "I can't understand this", etc.
          If those examining patents are not suita
          • by jedidiah (1196)
            The patent abstract should be clear enough so that students in the
            relevant art can use it as a "business requirements" document. From
            that point, the patent could be validated by allowing those same
            students the opportunity to replicate the claims of the patent.

            This would allow for a "student class project" standard of patentability.
            Anything that could be replicated by a bunch of students simply wouldn't
            be patentable. This could separate "cool new ideas" from the new
            techniques required to make them possible.
      • by shentino (1139071)
        What kind of belly lint are you smoking?

        A business seeking to "protect its own interests" *can* be faulted if it does so maliciously. Restraint of trade, trigger happy litigation, espionage, and sabotage are all ways a company can "play dirty". It's one of the reasons we have laws against monopolization, stealing trade secrets, initiating a frivolous lawsuit, and any number of other "fouls" in the modern sport of business.

        Is it ok for someone to take what they want if they do so by holding a gun to your h
        • by automandc (196618)
          Yes, anti-competitive behavior can be punished when it uses means beyond what the policy makers have decided is "kosher." But that doesn't diminish the fact that businesses still have lots of perfectly legal anticompetitive tools at their disposal. Patents are a case in point -- the entire purpose of a patent is to exclude all competition from a certain field for a limited period. That is not illegal -- just the opposite, it is the law at work.

          Your conspiracy theories about bribing the PTO and/or the f

    • by mpe (36238)
      Patents worked when it was about the small time inventor and they help start up companies. Once the industry giants and well established companies get hold of patents they use them in an anti-competitive manner.

      Even having a patent probably isn't of that much use to the "small inventor"/startup. If an established player just takes your invention they probably have enough spare cash to tie the case up in court for a while.
  • Trend Micro is not a patent troll, they are a legitimate company who patented a process that they developed. Now they are exercising their rights as a patent holder. So why the hate? This is what the patent system is designed to do.
    • Trend Micro is not a patent troll, they are a legitimate company who patented a process that they developed. Now they are exercising their rights as a patent holder. So why the hate? This is what the patent system is designed to do.

      As I understand it, the patent involves filtering viruses before they make it to end user computers; eg. at the router/mail relay etc. The reason for the hate is that this is an obvious way to prevent viruses from entering your network. The hate is not so much aimed at Trend Micro as it is at the broken patent. However, the fact that Trend Micro is suing their competition using a broken patent as ammo is not going to earn Trend Micro any kudos.
    • Trend Micro is not a patent troll, they are a legitimate company who patented a process that they developed.

      They didn't "patent a process", they have patented an entire category of applications, and one that they did not invent.
      • by adolf (21054)
        Stupid question:

        Who did invent the category?

        • by nguy (1207026)
          Many people, really. Read the discussion of prior art last time this came up here. Nobody should have been granted a patent on something this broad. If they had had a particular, clever method for actually doing the detection faster or more reliably, then that might have warranted a patent.
          • by adolf (21054)
            I find your ability to back up your assertion with fact to be very lacking. I do understand that you're under no particular obligation to substantiate your claim, but you must realize that by not doing so you are really not helping to further your argument.

            At all.

            • by nguy (1207026)
              I find your ability to back up your assertion with fact to be very lacking.

              What the hell do you want? A 15 page legal analysis? Go read the discussions about this on Slashdot; they contain a lot of the points that are worth mentioning.

              When this patent came out (just like the TiVo patent), the idea had been kicking around for many years; I remember being astonished at the time how a company could be so brazen or ignorant.

              The actual legal argument is being prepared as people are documenting prior art (the p
              • by adolf (21054)
                It's simple. You stated that Trend did not invent the category. I asked who did. You waved your hands around. I responded by explaining that hand-waving does not help your argument.

                And still, I see you there, waving your hands around.

                Brilliance.

                • I believe the poster was referring to the previous Slashdot discussion, the one referenced at the top of this discussion.

                  Here's a sample:
                  *waves HAND* [slashdot.org]
                  • by adolf (21054)
                    Yeah - I believe I saw that, too.

                    Ask a simple question, get a reference to a few hundred irrelevant comments in a Slashdot discussion.

                    It's like asking a specific question about birds, and being told to just go and figure it out, while being handed a disorganized, unbound stack of papers several inches thick describing warm blooded animals. The utility of the gesture is rather absent.

                    Thanks, though, for the link.

                • by nguy (1207026)
                  It's simple. You stated that Trend did not invent the category. I asked who did.

                  I did answer your question: I did. And so did thousands of other engineers around the world.

                  Is that clear enough?
    • Software patents are IMHO something that should not exist. Copyright makes far more sense than vague patents that usually can be stewed down to "anything at all to solve problem A".
    • They didn't patent something they created. They patented the obvious
      and took advantage of a badly broken patent system. Then they proceeded
      to use that bad patent to bully their competitors in the courts rather
      than making a superior product.

      They are another Tivo.
  • by Linux_ho (205887) on Monday February 11, 2008 @07:18PM (#22385790) Homepage
    I already have a firm policy of not buying from them because their products are crap and their technical support can be spectacularly unhelpful. They end-of-lifed a product that barely worked (the original Viruswall for Linux) and forced us to migrate by discontinuing virus signature updates. The product they replaced it with (VirusWall SMB for Linux) crashed on a daily-to-hourly basis, and over a period of weeks my repeated cries for help were basically ignored. We replaced their product with a Linux box running ClamAV and Postfix, which has run flawlessly ever since. No wonder they've turned to litigation.
  • I could care less. For all intents and purposes, Trend's software and hardware (Yes, they do build appliances) is, in my opinion, is the best option going for real AV protection. It catches what it can catch, does not bog down your box and when/if you need to remove it, it goes away with ZERO fuss, far unlike that of McAfee and Symantec products. Trend did have some issues on the consumer payware download where they sort of hid the fact they would re-charge your credit card next year for your renewal a
    • by dbIII (701233)
      Two things. My last serious brush with Trend products in a network I was called in to fix featured a lovely GUI that let you know how many dozens of bugbears and bagels were on "protected" machines with up to date virus signatures on the network but did not appear to have any way to remove it from the antivirus program or stop machines getting reinfected. It was a case of shutting down all of 100+ workstations, clean them individually with a DOS based tool on a boot floppy, and not reconnect them to the n
  • I agree that Trend Micro's behavior is bad. However, the only people that will know about this boycott, and the only people who will understand the problem are technical people, and technical people already don't use Trend Micro's products.
    • by samjam (256347)
      Well, take a look at http://badtrend.org/ [badtrend.org]

      It gives some good reasons for business people to avoid Trend Micro, most importantly because we want to avoid a trend of suppliers suing each-others users as it stifles the marketplace.

      Sam
  • Would you support a company that sued its competitors users?

    SCO sued their own customers which is one thing, but if the bad trend of sueing your competitors users takes hold it will be bad for commerce all round as no-one will want to buy any software for fear of having their expected return on investment nullified.

    Trend's bad trend is bad for global software business and all software businesses should sit on trend until they stop damaging the markingplace which is the last thing we need in the current econ

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