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+ - Can F/OSS projects be killed by dormant patents?

Submitted by skelly33
skelly33 (891182) writes "I am working on putting together an open source project that has commercial applications but am concerned that some day some random company with a thick patent portfolio is going to see it and try to stamp it out with a cease and desist claiming that they own the concept. The trouble is that many clever concepts have been conceived but lay dormant in patents that are just waiting around for a lawsuit where the patent holder has no intent of ever turning it into a product. Is this a legitimate concern for someone who would much rather avoid investing deep into a project so as not to be brought down by some idiotic/costly lawsuit, or is there any degree of protection afforded through original research and not-for-profit development of an otherwise patented concept under the banner of "Open Source"?"

If a thing's worth having, it's worth cheating for. -- W.C. Fields

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