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October 31, 2002

Thievery!

An article about a company essentially using its patents to squeeze money out of small e-commerce sites. Only a matter of time before they try to go after a big site like Amazon.com - but maybe they won't, because the patents might actually get challenged in court and thrown out. In the meantime, smaller companies who can't afford the litigation are being strongarmed into paying "license" fees or making settlements. Check out You May Be Next, an advocacy site which explains the details of this horrendous abuse of intellectual property rights.

This calls to mind the BT case, which involved BT suing over its patent for hyperlinks, and demanding licensing fees from ISPs (which would have certainly passed the cost down to consumers).

Yours, &c., LC | 01:49 PM | Legal