Beginning Next Week: InsideCounsel will become part of Corporate Counsel. Bringing these two industry-leading websites together will now give you comprehensive coverage of the full spectrum of issues affecting today's General Counsel at companies of all sizes. You will continue to receive expert analysis on key issues including corporate litigation, labor developments, tech initiatives and intellectual property, as well as Women, Influence & Power in Law (WIPL) professional development content. Plus we'll be serving all ALM legal publications from one interconnected platform, powered by, giving you easy access to additional relevant content from other InsideCounsel sister publications.

To prevent a disruption in service, you will be automatically redirected to the new site next week. Thank you for being a valued InsideCounsel reader!


More On

Tech companies make end-around on patent trolls

Google, Canon, Dropbox and others create the License on Transfer Network to address patent troll problem

The patent troll problem has continued to stymie the federal legislature. While many states attorneys general have attempted to fend of non-practicing entities that use aggressive demand letters and threats of patent infringement litigation to extort money from companies large and small, the U.S. Congress has had trouble eliminating the trolls. And, as so often happens when the government cannot solve a problem, business interests have stepped up to the plate with their own solution.

A host of prominent tech companies, including Google, Dropbox, SAP, Newegg and Canon, have formed the License on Transfer (LOT) Network. The LOT Network is described in press materials as, “a new kind of royalty-free cross-license meant to address these growing systemic problems.”



High profile case between patent troll and FTC impacts IP law

Report is proof positive that patent trolls have negative economic impact


Altogether, the companies in the Network hold almost 300,000 patent assets, generating more than $100 billion in revenue and employing more than 300,000 individuals.

Here’s how LOT works: the companies involved receive a license when the patents are transferred out of the LOT group, so companies retain their right to enforce a patent as long as they retain ownership. But, if and when that patent is sold, the other members of the group obtain a license to it, protecting them from potential litigation at the hands of a troll. 

“The LOT Network is a sort of arms control for the patent world,” said Allen Lo, deputy general counsel for Patents at Google. “By working together, we can cut down on patent litigation, allowing us to focus instead on building great products.”

Senior Editor and Community Manager

author image

Rich Steeves

Richard P. Steeves is Senior Editor and Community Manager of InsideCounsel magazine, where he covers the intellectual property and compliance beats. Rich earned a B.A....

Bio and more articles

Join the Conversation

Advertisement. Closing in 15 seconds.