The Patent Troll Tracker has been adding up the number of patent troll cases seen in the US between January and November 2007.
"Here are the cumulative statistics for the first 11 months of 2007, comparing the various districts. Note that I got an email from someone who had numbers run independently, and I am told I have undercounted the number of cases by X and the number of defendants in EDTX by Y. As I said above, this is really a judgment call. I may not have counted all of the bifurcated Judge Clark cases while someone else may have. Either way, even if my numbers are low, they are astoundingly high compared to history:
ED Texas: 343 patent cases, 1,320 defendants sued (140 troll cases)
CD California: 251 patent cases, 647 defendants sued (17 troll cases)
D New Jersey: 176 patent cases, 329 defendants sued (13 troll cases)
D Delaware: 128 patent cases, 310 defendants sued (16 troll cases)
ND California: 127 patent cases, 240 defendants sued (19 troll cases)
ND Illinois: 125 patent cases, 231 defendants sued (23 troll cases)
SD New York: 95 patent cases, 244 defendants sued (13 troll cases)
Peter Zura has an interesting post here, where he notes that Justia's stats show 2,577 cases for 2007 through the end of November - probably trending to be flat for the year, in terms of number of cases (ECF has 2,741 cases, 248 in November -- which has to have you wondering whether to trust Justia on this). But Zura wonders whether, if you track by the number of defendants, 2007 is in fact busier than previous years.
I think the answer is a resounding yes. The numbers I have collected and the ones others have sent me indicate that even though the number of cases filed nationwide is trending to be flat from 2006 to 2007, or perhaps up slightly - like 5% - the number of defendants sued is way way up. In EDTX alone, there were around 1,000 defendants sued in 2006, give or take. Well, already through the end of November, there are over 1,300 sued, a 30% increase. I am projecting around a 30% increase nationwide from 2006 to 2007, and perhaps even higher. That's about 1,800-2,000 more defendants sued for patent infringement in 2007 vs. 2006."