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Entrepreneurs Shaken by Patent Trolls

Patent trolls are companies that don’t invent or manufacture anything but make money monetizing patents. And they are the bane of entrepreneurs like Kate Doerksen. Kate Doerksen finished her MBA at Stanford and launched the eyeglass company DITTO, as CEO and Co-Founder. DITTO is a subscription service for designer eyeglasses and also licenses technology to retailers that lets users create a video of themselves virtually trying on different frames.Through the process she ran into patent troubles, from both patent trolls and from a large competitor, which bought a patent and then started up a competing service. “It was looking bleak. I had to lay off six engineers and I stopped taking a salary,” she says. She put all of her time into the legal battle and started selling “I Beat Trolls” t-shirts and speaking publicly on the issue.

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