Encyclopaedia Britannica's New Business Model: Sue For Patent Infringement
from the how-educational dept
Just as many are starting to question Encyclopaedia Britannica's ability to survive in the Wikipedia world, it appears that the company has come up with a new business model: suing completely unrelated businesses for patent infringement. Apparently, the company is suing navigation device makers TomTom and Magellan for infringing on a bunch of patents having to do with a computerized map system. A quick stroll through the patent files shows a number of such patents, with this one being a recent one. If you're in the business of providing mapping and navigation systems, this seems like a fairly obvious progression of the art, rather than something that deserves patent protection -- but apparently the lawyers at Britannica don't agree. Yet another example of companies whose traditional lines of business are being challenged relying on patents not to further innovation, but to hold it back.