Intellectual Ventures Patents Showing Up In More And More Lawsuits
from the patently-absurd dept
And now they're showing up even more. Joe Mullin points us to the news that a newly formed patent hoarding company, Oasis Research, which appears to be part of the patent hoarding operation set up by big name patent-attorney-turned-patent-hoarder, John Desmaris, has sued 16 companies, including AT&T, GoDaddy and IronMountain for infringing on a former IV patent having to do with "cloud" storage and online backup. The patents in question are 5,771,354; 5,901,228; 6,411,943; and 7,080,051.
Separately, someone contacted us recently, after receiving a threat from an operation called Webvention, who is using a former IV patent 5,251,294 to claim that that the way a website links to internal pages is patented. Seriously. In looking at the details, it looks like Intellectual Ventures sold off this patent last year, and it was just recently asserted against a big list of companies, including Abercrombie & Fitch, Bed Bath & Beyond, Dell, E*Trade, gamestop, Niemen Marcus, Visa, UPS and others.
Intellectual Ventures, in its standard level of absolute secrecy, won't say whether or not it has any financial stake in the outcome but earlier reports have claimed that the company sometimes will sell patents with an agreement that it gets some of any licensing revenue and/or judicial awards.
For all of Intellectual Ventures talk about not suing companies and actually being an invention factory, it's looking very much like the only thing it's unleashed on the world are some amazingly wasteful patent lawsuits on ridiculously over-broad patents that are creating serious waste in the market. And, even if the company really has no part in these lawsuits, it doesn't change the fact that it's adding to the list of ridiculous patent lawsuits by letting those kinds of patents get into the hands of people who file them.