Competing by Using Lawsuits – Everyone’s a Loser

I wrote a blog back on Feb 2012 just after the 2012 Super Bowl on how competition causes businesses to try new ways to attract customers by lowering prices, improving quality and developing new products and services. It’s driven the success of our economy. However, if entrepreneurs, working within the rules and boundaries of those regulations, are prevented from being in the market by others who take advantage of the system - it makes for less competition, inevitably leads to higher prices, results in poorer quality, and offers fewer new products and services.

Rather than competing on price, quality and features, InTouch Health uses the flawed patent system as its sword.  Armed with very broad patents, they laid claim to a sweeping ownership of a market by birth right.  After first announcing our innovative solution, people familiar with the market would always ask “Has InTouch sued you yet?”  And of course, people were right – eventually they did.  And, so started a battle that ended up in the US Federal courts, costing our small entrepreneurial company both time and money that could have been better used to serve our customers.  Seeing their armies of dark suited lawyers and all the motions flying to and fro leads me to believe they spent a fortune.  Too bad they didn’t use that money to help their customers. 

Competition is the bedrock of American creativity, as is the strength of our patent ideals to defend intellectual creativity and thought.   But with a system that lets patent holders accuse anyone of anything - it’s easy to see how unscrupulous businesses can wreak havoc on competitors and the market.  And the money spending starts with the first accusation.  Customers are harassed, confidential files are handed over, and so starts the process that favors the holders of patents even if they shouldn’t have been granted in the first place.

In the 2012 Super Bowl the New York Giants snuck into this game and came in as the under dogs, “unlikely to win” they all said. But New York had the better team.  Despite Brady’s best efforts, it was apparent to all that New York would win.  Nevertheless, Brady didn’t stop pounding and it all came down to the last minute of the game when he threw a low probability Hail Mary pass to try to win. And just like in Los Angeles last week – the big guys didn’t prove it on the field - the little guys won.  Click here to learn more.