This is what the legal equivalent of nuclear first strike looks like. And I've got a case of the giggles.
The short of it is as follows. A few lawyers get together and form a law firm. said law firm buys the rights to sue on behalf of patents. technically, the law firm bought the patents with the intent to use them, but they do not have any engineers or marketing or anything to do with said patents. The law firm then goes out and finds companies that are vaguely using technology that a judge might find is in violation of the patents. "Nice company youse gots here, ain't that right? Be a shame if you had to suck all your capital into a multi-year lawsuit. How about youse guys settle?" Most companies, with the exception of Newegg, have gone the settlement route.
In walks Cloudflare.
- Now, instead of just fighting to invalidate the single patent in their case, Cloudflare is backing a campaign to have all of Blackbird's patent holdings – roughly 70 of them – declared invalid for future litigation.
Cloudflare takes a look at the patent portfolio this law firm has, sees that all they are is a patent troll and laughs while saying BRING IT ON. Then they make a call to the combined autism of the Internet to look for prior art ON EVERY SINGLE PATENT THEY REPRESENT. If the law firm moves forward, Cloudflare will wage war to invalidate every patent they own. If the law firm backs down, Cloudflare is going to go on the offensive and get the courts to censure the lawyers. Turns out that you cannot sue for patent infringement, easily at least, if you are nothing but a legal patent holding entity. If you produce something with the patents you own, or represent people who do, it is a bit easier and a bit more on the side of legal.
If, IF, Cloudflare does go nuclear, does go for the fight and takes this as far as they can, there is a possibility of giving the rest of the US tech industry a spine and stop settling with the trolls. Hell it may even set precedents.
Hopefully I got that all down in plain inglish and did not screw up the basics.