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Apple settles \'Freeny\' patent licensing with E-Data

updated 11:10 am EDT, Wed August 4, 2004

iTunes patent dispute

, Tiscali, HMV, On Demand Distribution, and Satellite Newspapers, further reinforces the validity of our patents. Given our continued success, we have identified additional companies that are infringing upon our intellectual property, both in the U.S. and abroad, and will seek the necessary legal actions to ensure that our rights are enforced worldwide."



E-Data says it has intensified its focus in the U.S., where its has already secured more than 30 domestic licenses and has received a favorable decision by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on November 6, 2000 - supporting the scope of the company's patents. The company says it is continuing to alert additional companies to their need for a license under the Freeny patent and is analyzing the activities of others.



As part of the renewed focus, E-Data also announced plans to pursue litigation against 14 companies in the US who it claims violated the Freeny patent prior to its expiration. Those companies include Cinemark USA, Inc., Regal Entertainment Group, the Thomson Corp., International Data Group., Amazon.com, Movietickets.com, Inc., Ticketmaster, Marcus Theaters, Fandango, Inc., Franklin Electronic Publishers, The New York Times, Hallmark Cards, Inc., American Greetings and NewsBank.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. ntsc

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Goble Goble Go...

    ble oooo lovely money

  1. cmoney

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    How long are Euro patents

    valid? 20 year old patent still enforceable?

  1. Sebastien

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Re:How long are Euro pate

    It was registered in 1985 as per the PTO, so in the US it's still valid, and any past "infrigement" until it expires can be taken to the courts.

  1. ApeInTheShell

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    No offense

    but should this patent apply worldwide? Certainly, there are plenty of patents out there in the United States that Europeans have broken in the past or will in the future with their "union". Geesh, what next, customers pay royalties for compiling source code in order to produce a product.

  1. lkrupp

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Scavengers

    Let me get this straight. Some outfit get a patent 20 years ago and apparently does absolutely nothing with it. They just sit back and wait for an innovator to do something with it (Apple, Microsoft, whoever) and show up at the door with their lawyer and a canvas bag to put the money into. Something is seriously wrong with the patent laws across the board.

  1. mtroute

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Pay Up

    I have a patent for gas exchange, anyone who breathes now owes me money, pay-up b*******!

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Stuff

    Is it still valid? 20 year old patent still enforceable?
    It was registered in 1985 as per the PTO, so in the US it's still valid, and any past "infrigement" until it expires can be taken to the courts.

    Actually, I believe patents only covered 17 years in the US. However, from what I recall reading earlier this year (in a discussion of the lack of a european ITMS), the patent was filed later in Europe, and as such still applies in that country. Technically, Apple was off the hook in the US because the patent expired in the US before the iTMS opened.

    Note that the article says they're suing US companies who violated the patent prior to its expiration.

    but should this patent apply worldwide? Certainly, there are plenty of patents out there in the United States that Europeans have broken in the past or will in the future with their "union". Geesh, what next, customers pay royalties for compiling source code in order to produce a product.

    Patents aren't worldwide. The agreement Apple signed is for world-wide rights. The patents in question covered Europe and Canada, where it still is enforceable.

    Theoretically the agreement may end when the patents expire, though.

    [BTW: Just so you know, I think this whole thing is a joke (well, except people are being sued, so its not a joke to them) and I'm not defending the patent or anything else about it.]

  1. UberFu

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    let me get this straight

    - Apple just paid money to some compnay that has a patent for basically electronic file transfers of any type [not just the MACNN thing about music swapping] and so that means Adobe can be sued for the invention and development off the PDF file and its functionality - and everytime I send an eMail to someone - the parties that can be sued include - myself - the company that owns the server that hosts my eMail account - any companies that own the routers that switch my eMail around the net - the person I send the eMail to - the companies that are subscribed to for service [cable modem] a the very least_ FTP software makers like FETCH can be held liable - my brain is in overdrivve as to who could get sued for what under this thing - it's potentially worse than the RIAA thing_ Damn !

  1. UberFu

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    one more thing.....

    Isn't the internet basically an electronic file sharing medium ??

    so anyone that uses the internet for anything - checking out recipies - banking and so on - is liable - not to mention anyone that owns and has posted/uploaded a website ??

  1. jimothy

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    re: Stuff

    "...the patent was filed later in Europe, and as such still applies in that country."

    Of course, Europe isn't actually a country.

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