Paul Allen's lawsuit against Apple dismissed, Allen to refile

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Microsoft co-founder and billionaire Paul Allen's lawsuit against Apple and 10 other major tech companies hit a snag Friday when a judge dismissed the complaint for being too vague in its allegations. Allen has until Dec. 28 to file an amended complaint.



Allen initially filed the suit in August through his now-defunct Interval Research Corp, claiming that Apple had infringed on four patents related to e-commerce and Internet search. 10 other companies are named in the suit, including Google, Facebook, Yahoo and AOL.



In October, Apple and the other defendants filed a request to dismiss the charges. The accused companies asserted that Allen's clams were too broad.



"Interval has sued eleven major corporations and made the same bald assertions that each defendant infringes 197 claims in four patents," Apple wrote in the motion. "As the U.S. Supreme Court noted in Twombly, it is in this type of situation in which courts should use their 'power to insist upon some specificity in pleading before allowing a potentially massive factual controversy to proceed.'"



According to The Wall Street Journal, U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman dismissed Allen's original complaint Friday, siding with the defendants.



"The allegations in the complaint are spartan," wrote Judge Pechman, setting a Dec. 28 deadline for Allen's company to file a more specific complaint.



Allen's spokespeople called the dismissal a "procedural issue," and reassured that "the case is staying on track."



Alan Fisch, a lawyer not involved in the case, said Allen's attorneys shouldn't have any trouble rewriting the complaint to meet the higher standards for specificity. "I would see this as a temporary setback or speed bump on the road that will be this litigation," said Fisch.



For several years now, Apple has held the unfortunate title of world's most-sued tech company. As a result, the Cupertino, Calif., is recruiting lawyers with applicable intellectual property experience. According to Businessweek, Apple has also hired "some of the nation's top patent lawyers as outside counsel."



Apple is engaged in numerous legal battles against its competitors. Earlier this month, Apple added 12 more patents to its lawsuit against Motorola, bringing the total number of patents that Apple claims Motorola is infringing upon to 24. By comparison, Motorola alleges that Apple has violated 18 of its own patents.



Nokia and Apple are also facing each other in a lengthy legal confrontation. Last year, Nokia sued Apple over the iPhone's use of patented wireless standards. Apple promptly countersued, alleging that the Finnish company infringed on 13 of its patents.



Allen's suit specifically references the following four patents:

United States Patent No. 6,263,507 issued for an invention entitled "Browser for Use in Navigating a Body of Information, With Particular Application to Browsing Information Represented By Audiovisual Data."

United States Patent No. 6,034,652 issued for an invention entitled "Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device."

United States Patent No. 6,788,314 issued for an invention entitled "Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device."

United States Patent No. 6,757,682 issued for an invention entitled "Alerting Users to Items of Current Interest."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 32
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    United States Patent No. 6,263,507 issued for an invention entitled "Browser for Use in Navigating a Body of Information, With Particular Application to Browsing Information Represented By Audiovisual Data."



    so you can not look at things that have video and audio... sounds like a few thousands companies/programs can be sued over this.. vague (idk what it really means really, this is an interpretation, this goes for all my replies)

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    United States Patent No. 6,034,652 issued for an invention entitled "Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device."



    someone close to a device is drawn to see the device by a program.... totally.... thats like any program that draws users attention right?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    United States Patent No. 6,788,314 issued for an invention entitled "Attention Manager for Occupying the Peripheral Attention of a Person in the Vicinity of a Display Device."



    this is the same as the last WTF? same thing different patent number? was this patent made so that they could make double $ from suing?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    United States Patent No. 6,757,682 issued for an invention entitled "Alerting Users to Items of Current Interest."



    u mean any program that has a pop-up, or a notification of any kind....





    i pronounce these ultra vague, and used commonly, as well as 2 of them being the exact same
  • Reply 2 of 32
    citycity Posts: 522member
    Even with all that money and that really big boat, Allen must be bored.
  • Reply 3 of 32
    Pretty sickening, really.



    I have applied for patents before. You have to be ultra-specific in describing your invention. I have had to rewrite my application four times thus far, and am currently working on the fifth.



    I can assure you that my patent's title and description are a lot more informative than: "Alerting Users to Items of Current Interest."



    I mean, what the fuck is that?



    I throw a lemon at your house to let you know there is something cool on TV?



    PATENT GRANTED.
  • Reply 4 of 32
    This is high on my list with what's wrong with the world. Definitely behind starvation and oppression... but ahead of music piracy... for sure.
  • Reply 5 of 32
    Just skimmed patent 6,263,507 (56-pages!!) and it's geared toward browsers vs a device. It goes as far as to use the term "news browser" which could be a suit against any company that produces a modern browser. I get where what the patent is talking about was novel for 1996, but not being a lawyer myself, I would think there would be something about the "natural evolution" especially when you look at technology. Then again look how long it takes for amendments to catch up, case in point the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.



    Either way it will end with corporations throwing around more money than any of us will ever see in our lifetime.
  • Reply 6 of 32
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by danielshock View Post


    This is high on my list with what's wrong with the world. Definitely behind starvation and oppression... but ahead of music piracy... for sure.



    Where does it rank against Jailbreaking? Ahead or behind?
  • Reply 7 of 32
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,509member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by enohpI View Post


    Where does it rank against Jailbreaking? Ahead or behind?



    To answer this question, place a mirror in a large tub of water. Then, straddling the mirror, dip your head in the water by bending over, and hold your breath. Open your eyes. The first thing you see, a head or a behind, is your answer.
  • Reply 8 of 32
    macrrmacrr Posts: 488member
    for being a billionaire.. he shoulda been smart enough to file this in east texas and bought the judge a few gifts.



    Just like everyone else who sues apple.
  • Reply 9 of 32
    ...was epic! Good job!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post


    To answer this question, place a mirror in a large tub of water. Then, straddling the mirror, dip your head in the water by bending over, and hold your breath. Open your eyes. The first thing you see, a head or a behind, is your answer.



  • Reply 10 of 32
    I haven't read the opinion, but it seems that this motion to dismiss that was granted was a FRCP 12(b)(6). The Supreme Court in Twombly and Iqbal required that the facts put forth in the complaint lead to a plausible connection to afford a remedy. In this case, it seems like a simple fix would be made to get past the complaint stage in the future. Long story short... Apple won on procedure (dismissed).
  • Reply 11 of 32
    I'm going to patent "A device by which to state the bleeding obvious then sit patiently for 20 years until people are doing what was bleeding obviously going to happen, then realise its financial potential through means of legal procedure".



    Assuming no one has already patented patents...
  • Reply 12 of 32
    Paul Allen is a goddamn patent troll. He's a scavenger like Bill Gates. He's the one who negotiated to buy QDOS from Seattle Computer for 50,000. He always seeks to profit from others' inventions when stealing others' code like what Microsoft did all these years. Guys like him should go to hell.
  • Reply 13 of 32
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    In October, Apple and the other defendants filed a request to dismiss the charges. The accused companies asserted that Allen's clams were too broad.



    Yeah, damn you Paul Allen and "broad clams" :P
  • Reply 14 of 32
    How about Paul put his money into starting up companies to solve problems that are rampant in this nation?
  • Reply 15 of 32
    sennensennen Posts: 1,465member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by enohpI View Post


    Where does it rank against Jailbreaking? Ahead or behind?



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post


    To answer this question, place a mirror in a large tub of water. Then, straddling the mirror, dip your head in the water by bending over, and hold your breath. Open your eyes. The first thing you see, a head or a behind, is your answer.



    Dare you to try it, iGenius! I'm betting on "behind".
  • Reply 16 of 32
    Microsoft is notorious for using others' inventions and incorporating them into their own. However we shouldn't speak too loudly ... remember SoundJam? Bought out by Apple to become iTunes ...
  • Reply 17 of 32
    cmvsmcmvsm Posts: 204member
    Same guy who sold what he didn't have (an IBM OS), ripped off some poor slob at Seattle Computer and made billions with someone else's idea. Wow, this guy is something else.



    He's just so aggravated that MS is pretty much stagnant and cannot release and market a successful new idea to save their lives, as they've been so vampire drunk on Windows, so he needs to have a little bit of comfort in suing the company that is giving it to him in the keyster, regardless of the fact that it actually has no merit. He however has the time and money to waste on his 416 foot yacht called the 'Octopus'...how fitting.
  • Reply 18 of 32
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cmvsm View Post


    Same guy who sold what he didn't have (an IBM OS), ripped off some poor slob at Seattle Computer and made billions with someone else's idea. Wow, this guy is something else.



    He's just so aggravated that MS is pretty much stagnant and cannot release and market a successful new idea to save their lives, as they've been so vampire drunk on Windows, so he needs to have a little bit of comfort in suing the company that is giving it to him in the keyster, regardless of the fact that it actually has no merit. He however has the time and money to waste on his 416 foot yacht called the 'Octopus'...how fitting.



    Whiney whiney whiney whine.



    Windows Phone 7 is beautiful. If I didn't use iOS, I'd jump to that in a heartbeat.



    This is an Apple evangelist talking. Microsoft created a spectacular competitor to iOS. I'd never use Android with iOS and Windows Phone 7 as alternatives.
  • Reply 19 of 32
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by smaceslin View Post


    Microsoft is notorious for using others' inventions and incorporating them into their own. However we shouldn't speak too loudly ... remember SoundJam? Bought out by Apple to become iTunes ...



    You know, I might come up with a few instances of Apple STEALING a technology (it's like breathing for Microsoft), but I wouldn't use the an example of them BUYING the company for its program.





    sheesh!
  • Reply 20 of 32
    Patent trolls are the corporate world's equivalent of spam. Perhaps the courts should began to do with patent suits what they did with copyright lawsuits in 1998: requiring a losing plaintiff to pay all a winning defendant's legal fees. In this case, since the initial lawsuit has been tossed out, Paul Allen et al should already being paying. That might make the greedy Paul Allen take notice.
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