by Mike Masnick
Wed, Aug 27th 2008 12:14am
You may recall stories involving a small patent holding firm called Klausner Technologies, which claims to hold patents on the concept of "visual voicemail." It seems to have interpreted these patents pretty broadly to the point that it considers anyone who offers any graphical interface to voicemail as infringing. Over the years, that's meant lawsuits against AOL, Vonage, Apple, eBay, AT&T and others. Apparently, suing one by one was too much trouble, because Klausner has now sued another bunch of companies including Google, Verizon and Embarq. Of course, the company is playing up the fact that all those other companies it sued settled, but we've seen that game before. There's not much new here as this scenario is all too common. We have a company with an overly broad patent on a concept that was a natural obvious progression of the art, suing pretty much every company that actually innovates, thus making actual innovation more expensive.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Verizon Gives Net Neutrality A Giant Middle Finger, Exempts Own Video Service From Wireless Usage Caps
- ISPs Are Trampling Net Neutrality While The FCC Sits Boxed In By Lawsuits, Upcoming Election
- Beyond Open Access And Open Data: Open Science -- And No Patents
- Stupid Patent Of The Month: Sharing Your Hard Copy Documents, But On A Social Network
- Qualcomm Says It's Fighting For The Little Guy, While Really Blocking Patent Reform That Would Help The Little Guy