Net2Phone Jumps Into The VoIP Patent Lawsuit Business: Sues Skype

from the everyone's-doing-it dept

In the last year, we’ve witnessed plenty of companies dig up VoIP patents with which to sue market innovator Vonage. Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and Nortel all were able to get Vonage to cough up some money, rather than continue to fight some questionable patents. The fact that there are so many overlapping patents, is exactly the “patent thicket” problem that our current patent system encourages. Of course, there are always more patents to choose from, and it appears that Net2Phone has dug out an old patent and decided not to sue Vonage, but to go after Skype instead. Unfortunately, there’s very little in the way of detail. The ZDNet post just claims it happened, but doesn’t give any details about the actual lawsuit (even where it’s been filed). Also, the writer seems amazed that it’s based on a patent filed in 2000, even though it’s common enough to see old patents used in patent lawsuits. In this case, it’s absolutely true that Net2Phone was an early pioneer in the VoIP space, but saw its business eclipsed when it had trouble coming up with a product people actually wanted to use (and then watched as providers like Skype passed them by). If anything, this seems like yet another example of those who lost in the marketplace punishing those who innovated better. Skype came up with a good product that people wanted to use. Net2Phone did not. It’s hard to see why Skype should be punished for doing a better job serving the market.

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Companies: net2phone, skype

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Comments on “Net2Phone Jumps Into The VoIP Patent Lawsuit Business: Sues Skype”

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angry dude says:

Mike's nonsense again

“Skype came up with a good product that people wanted to use”


Good product which takes control of your CPU and bandwidth for communication among other users and potentially poses very serious security risk for your organization…

Mikey has a very strange definition of a “good consumer product”
No wonder, he’s just a PR hack

Rick says:

Re: Mike's nonsense again

That’s funny. I run Skype 24/7 and have never noticed any CPU issues. I can even run uTorrent at full throttle and not notice any problems, with torrents or talking on Skype.

In fact, Skype has replaced my landline and it sounds better too.

I used to use Net2Phone’s phone cards (their PC service was horrid). 1 cent a minute long distance was pretty cool back in 2000.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Mike's nonsense again

Dont feed the trolls!

Even if they are really crappy and un-inventive trolls.

Lets practice our anti RIAA/MPAA tactics on angry dude. Just don’t reply to any of his comments. if you see his name just skip over to the next comment and refuse to read his drivel.

If we can’t skip over a second rate troll’s comments, how can we survive without buying over priced CDs/DVDs?

Bob says:

Angry Dude, what's up with you?

I’m serious dude. Are you on the rag this week? You constantly are going after Mike, calling him names, and even though Mike is a big boy and handle you easily enough, the rest of us here, really are growing weary of hearing your constant tantrums.

If you have nothing of worth to add to the discussion, why not just remain silent. If you are angry with Mike, email him and have it out, but the rest of us would rather just talk about the meat of the issue, instead of hearing what you think of Mike.

Sweet Chuckie says:

Re: Angry Dude, what's up with you?

I seriously doubt anyone takes Angwy Dude to heart. He’s possibly an orphan, or maybe simply hasn’t received a hug lately. I personally enjoy his crazy-ass diatribes, along with other readers comments in return. I’ve been reading TD for 2 years now, and his comments are always the same. It’s hard to find something anything that doesn’t change.

Shun says:

Survival != Better Product

I’m not defending angry dude (I don’t agree with his tone) but I don’t always see the “best” technology win out over less worthwhile tech. Sometimes, it’s the person with the deep pockets that wins.

Beyond that, Skype seems to have a decent product, and however they got there, they beat everyone else in the game. In Skype’s case, they were bought out by eBay. Does that constitute a win? If you are a shareholder, or were at one point holding a bunch of stock worth an unknown amount, then yes.

AFAIK, Skype does not do traditional VOIP. There was a report a while back, maybe it was Schmoo-con, where they proved that VoIP was easily sniffable. If you could get between two points running VoIP, you could sniff the ends. Skype was singled out as being encrypted, so not subject to this casual sniffing.

Gee, if that is what it takes to be innovative, sign me up. I’ll throw something together with Asterisk, VoIP, and continuous encryption, then save the world by lunch time. I’ll have to develop it outside of the U.S. or a bunch of patent trolls will sue me.

I wonder if Antigua has spent any of that $29 million, yet?

angry dude says:

Re: Survival != Better Product


Don’t you see that Skype is NOT a *consumer product* at all ?

It is a peer-to-peer viral software infection which was released upon the world

Much like Kazaa and the rest of P2P music/video/bandwidth stealing schemes

Your ISP is paying part of the bill if you have some broadband connection like Fios
Unfortunately it’s not easy to block Skype cause it uses the same port numbers intended for completely different applications – basically cheats to get across networks

Cixelsid says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Survival != Better Product

“In ALL other respectable institutions Skype is strictly BANNED on ANY computer attached to network”


This would be funny if it wasn’t so sad. Angry turd, you got skype blocked at your Best Buy tech asst. job because, in concurrence with most of the reasoning peoples of the world, NOBODY LIKES YOU.

Cixelsid says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Survival != Better Product

“little dude

go back to your class asap
your teacher is already looking for you”

I’m sorry, angry 40yr old tech. asst. mgr, I really am, I could say just about anything and it would be better than that lame-ass comment. I could say “so’s yer face” and it would make more sense. But really, you’re already in such a sad state I wouldn’t want to be responsible for your pitiful attempt at suicide – scratching at your wrists with a nailclipper in a yellowed motel bath in Utah, vainly waiting for somebody to care – really I juuuusssst wouldn’t…be…able…to…handle…the…guilt.

Bob says:

I have to agree with Angry Dude now

Well, you convinced me, SKYPE isn’t a commercial product.

I feel like a damn fool for paying for that PREMIUM ACCT with SKYPE that gave me a KCMO telephone number and allowed to call anywhere in the US and Canada for free for the past year.

Angry Dude, please help me get my money back, if anyone can, you can!!

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