Hmm, I must have missed that one. Link?
No way is a good judge going to let this off with a "mistakes were made" attitude.
Those are kind of high. Did they actually charge those rates? Or retroactively bumped up the rates once they knew the case was dismissed?
Junior and mid level associates (400-650 an hour) do most of the heavy lifting. Partners are more supervisory, but will be do a lot for depositions, hearings, negotiations and trials.
Even a relatively small case against Acacia costs like 1.5-2 mil.
Quite often partners in big firms make more than that
Depends on what you need done. Legal work is expensive but you have to look at the leverage/productivity multiplier of their output.
TIL some people make literally a 100 times what the average person makes.
That doesn't mean that they actually get that much money for every hour worked, since the billed hours have to pay unbillable costs like office rent, admin overhead, taxes etc.
If you are willing to look beyond the rich world: world average GDP per capita is something like 10k USD. At 2000 hours worked per year, that 0.5 USD per hour.
Your `average' person already makes 20 times as much as the actual average person.
(Keep in mind, that the median is lower than the average. Check out http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-17512040)
No it isn't. It's $5 an hour, barely under the US minimum wage.
Interesting that the global gdp is that high, actually.
Comparing to the minimum wage is still a bit misleading, since the wage share of GDP is far from 100%.
Firm partners are heavily compensated based on how much work they bring in, at most firms. But it varies.
This firm was diligent enough to question the very basis of the lawsuit and ferret out evidence that evidently neither of the parties realized they had that the patents had been properly bulk licensed. I've worked with some very good corporate lawyers, and learned from them and other sources that such diligent competence is by no means a given.
You really should be more educated about reality and acfual statistics.
Go watch the Park Avenue (2012) film on PBS.
Acacia did something that would be considered illegal and exploitative in almost every jurisdiction, whereas bundling a browser straddles a legal gray area. Apple does it OS X and iOS, Google does it on Android & Chromebooks, and nearly every Linux distro does it. On iOS, you can't even use a browser engine other than Safari's WebKit. And none of these companies have gotten into trouble.
It just seems unfair to me that when a company does something slightly unfairly competitive (like Microsoft) they get hit with huge fines, but when a company like Acacia does something that's outright evil and illegal, the fines are a joke.
I do think Microsoft should be paying even bigger fines for patent-trolling Android manufacturers with false patent claims. And a judicial decision or executive act ordering Apple to allow users to install their own software on iOS, and removing the ban on interpreters/browser engines/etc on the App Store would be appropriate.
 $794 million in 2003, $449 million in 2006, $1.44 billion in 2008, and $765 million (€561 mil)in 2013 -- a total of over $3.4 billion, all for bundling standard software with Windows that all other OSes also bundle. And this money paid in fines to the European Court goes back into the EU budget. (TBH, this smells strangely as a revenue-generating move by the Commission.) See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_Corp_v_Commission
There were plenty of other cases pending against Microsoft, but they were all dropped when George W. Bush came into power. If Gore had won, Microsoft probably would have been broken up, like AT&T before it.
Microsoft may not dominate the areas of cloud computing or smartphones, but those are separate industries from the desktop. And Microsoft continues to pour money into those industries by investing in Azure and Windows RT. They may yet come to dominate those industries if Amazon or Google make a mistake.
Microsoft has also added mandatory spyware (essentially) to their new Windows 10. Some of it can be disabled, but other parts can't. They are also pushing their Windows Store thing. It's still possible to install desktop software without paying Microsoft, but for how much longer?
HN has a real blind spot when it comes to how harmful Microsoft was and continues to be.