We honestly have to look at this through their eyes rather than those being affected. To be fair, the former co-founder NTP (he died last summer) actually did design and patent a system of email delivery to wireless devices for AT&T years and years ago. He never had an actual product - just contractual work that was a bit ahead of its time (sort of) that never materialized into a working system (to my knowledge).
With that said, I think that such a patent would hopefully not be granted in our 'overhauled' patenting system in modern times. Sometimes patents will just run their course, and other times, I think its our patent office's and justice system's obligation to null and void these kind of broad-idea patents (for example, your DNA strands are patented).
I don't think that Judge Spencer is going to rule in favor of RIM, though. He wants the case to be over and done with - he has stated as much (which is very unprofessional to the whole balanced argument about the judicial system). He has stated that he's not going to base his decision on the patent office, just as he doesn't expect them to base their decisions on his ruling. If the courts rule against RIM, but the patent office later rules against the patents, then I'm not sure what will happen - but I will ask for Spencer's resignation, as these cases should not be decided on outdated evidence if new findings are made during the appeals process (my opinion).
In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and is widely regarded as a bad move.