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February 24, 2010


Kyle  Fleming

Hmmm, I think I might have a patent on stockpiling food, medicine, camouflage, body armor, weapons and building an indoor shooting range in preparation for Armageddon.

Of course, I am a NPE when it comes to this.

Wesley Franklin

Why did you fail to report that Judge Folsom found that because Verhoeven personally was responsible for "willful disobedience, gross indifference to the right of the adverse party, deliberate callousness, or gross negligence" for withholding "timely production of [Girard's] Employment Agreement", Cisco was fined $100,000. Given this description of the behavior Verhoeven will engage in to try to win a case, dare I suggest he wrote the last sentence in your story. You deserve to be fired for such irresponsible reporting. By the way you would have seen that the dismissal is on appeal to the Federal circuit if you had looked at the District Court Docket.


This Patent Troll Tracker case has legs. I thought it was melodramatic before, but this latest item tops it all. Good thing they got this guy before he became the central player in another patent law murder case -- like the recent one in which a university staffer killed her colleagues to protect her IP rights. Sounds like Girard is paranoid and unhinged enough to have pulled off a similar act.

Joe Mullin

Wesley Franklin, thanks for your comment. Regarding the discovery dispute, it wasn't case dispositive and the post was long already, so I didn't get into it. But you're right, Cisco was fined for not handing over that evidence fast enough. I did post the order so anyone interested can read more about that, and now all readers of the post will also see your comment.

Regarding your second criticism, I did look at the docket, and the fact that the decision is being appealed is clearly noted in my story. Re-read the paragraph that begins "ESN v. Cisco, meanwhile..." (7th from bottom.)

Wesley Franklin

You are right that the appeal is mentioned in your article. But, the fact remains that your reporting is remarkably biased and inaccurate. You have convicted Girard of having an "illegal stockpile of firearms, ammunition, grenades...explosives, double-edged knives" even though the Massachusetts newspaper article you cite in your article makes it absolutely clear the weapons have not been examined as to legality and Girard has not been found guilty of anything or even of threatening anyone. What would you say to him or his 16 year old son if he were found innocent? Would you help him get his reputation back or would you just dismiss him as a lucky Patent Troll? And if he gets his patent back, would you apologize for the last sentence in your article and perhaps admit it is as inane as Verhoeven's claim about the way Patent Trolls pass patents around that appears to have prompted it? C'mon Joe, there has to be at least a small amount of decency and balance that will seep into your writing if you just allow it to happen.

Joe Mullin

Wesley Franklin:

I didn't "convict" Girard, or report that he was convicted. I reported, accurately, that Girard was arrested and charged with crimes, just like many other news outlets did, some of which are linked in the piece.

Second, I don't know what you mean by writing the weapons "have not been examined as to legality." The authorities did, in fact, press certain charges—making allegations of illegality—against Girard after looking at his weapons. That's what my article, and every article that I linked to, pointed out. It's also true that some of his weapons were legal and licensed, as I point out at the bottom of the first paragraph.

So again, I'm not seeing any inaccuracy here. But if you find something, please go ahead and point it out.

As to your accusations that I'm biased, you're certainly entitled to your opinion. We may have to agree to disagree.

It sounds like you may be familiar with ESN v. Cisco or Girard himself. If you think there's additional information that would add balance to the story, feel free to contact me and we can talk it over. I am opening to reporting and publishing additional info on this topic.

Wesley Franklin

I have no familiarity with ESN or Girard. I just happen to read your blog from time to time and was struck by the tone and content of this one. You finally got Girard's status right in your overnight post--only arrested and charged. As far as talking, you would have a hard time convincing me that this article isn't really about the NPE/patent troll debate. that you don't side with Cisco and Verhoeven and that you didn't use Girard's arrest as an opportunity to advance the case against patent trolls. That seems clear from the way you ended the article-- "Give Girard a break. It's tough to double-check all your documents and build a weapons stockpile at the same time."

Joe Mullin

The post has been correct the entire time. It hasn't been altered at all since publication. Thanks for finally acknowledging it's correct.

Wesley Franklin

The bottom line is unchanged. You are biased and inaccurate in your writing. Saying otherwise changes nothing given the record.

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