Acacia Continues Patent Extortion By Knocking Sites Offline

from the more-patent-silliness dept

It appears that (unfortunately) Acacia, yet another of these ridiculous “intellectual property holding companies” that have done nothing themselves to actually innovate or market a product, has won another round in their patent extortion battle. We’ve followed their story for months since they began suing porn sites. They claim they have a patent on streaming video, and they went after porn sites assuming they wouldn’t fight back. It appears they were right. Later in the summer they won the case because the porn site owners simply didn’t respond – it was a win by default. With that win in their pocket the latest news is that they forced 42 porn sites offline this weekend. Not knowing what else to do, the sites paid up the hush money for a license, and were allowed back online. Of course, while it may not seem like such a big deal to knock a few porn sites offline, now they’ve got some precedents which they can start using to scare plenty of other companies that offer any form of streaming media. Once again, I’d like an explanation for how this actually has done anything to improve innovation? Instead, it’s slowed down innovation by taking money out of the hands of those who actually are using new technologies and offering real products.

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Comments on “Acacia Continues Patent Extortion By Knocking Sites Offline”

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Beck says:

Just like PanIP

These guys are just like the slime at PanIP, a company which claims to hold a patent on using text and images to sell goods via the Internet (really!).

PanIP has not sued companies like Amazon or Dell. Instead they bring suit against small businesses that sell over the Internet. They have carefully calibrated their license fee to make it just low enough that it is not worth it for the sued companies to fight back, and instead they give in and license the patents. (Similar to the DirecTV extortion racket.)

However, a group of companies have banded together to fight back. They have a web site with the details, called You May Be Next. The latest message from Tim indicates that the tactic might be working, they have convinced the USPTO to review PanIP’s patent based on the existence of prior art.

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