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The Courts Government Entertainment Games News

Worlds.com To Extend Virtual World Lawsuit To Second Life, WoW 106

Posted by Soulskill
from the one-percent-inspiration-ninety-nine-percent-litgation dept.
FiveRings writes "BusinessInsider has a story about Worlds.com, a company that inherited the patent on virtual worlds from the Starlight Starbright Foundation and is taking it to court against NCSoft over the company's various MMOs. If successful, he will press on and sue the makers of Second Life and World of Warcraft as well. The article notes that the NCSoft case is being held in east Texas, which has been a favorable venue for patent trolls in the past."
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Worlds.com To Extend Virtual World Lawsuit To Second Life, WoW

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  • Re:Heh. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:56AM (#27177759)
    Since when has prior use stopped a patent?
  • Asking for it? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by 1WingedAngel (575467) on Friday March 13, 2009 @02:32AM (#27177889) Homepage

    IANAL, but I can't see where rattling your saber at a couple of big dogs while suing the small fish isn't begging to have some timely amicus briefs filed by the opposition.

    I'm pretty sure that's why the more successful patent trolls get a bunch of smaller cases on the books as precedent before going after the guys with real money.

  • by EvilIdler (21087) on Friday March 13, 2009 @05:18AM (#27178463)

    OK, send in the Nazgul, then:
    http://domino.watson.ibm.com/comm/pr.nsf/pages/news.20070416_virtualworlds.html [ibm.com]

    IBM has many projects related to virtual worlds.

  • Very Broad Patent (Score:3, Insightful)

    by infalliable (1239578) on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:07AM (#27179597)

    Reading their patent claims, they're patent is VERY broad and IMO pretty obvious.

    It's basically saying that the client passes avatar location and heading to the server, and the server passes the info on all other nearby characters back to the clients. Thinking about the problem for a couple seconds, you should be able to determine that it MUST work this way.

    Any MMO game with a central server pretty much has no option other to work this way.

    ------
    End software patents!

  • Re:Home (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mabhatter654 (561290) on Friday March 13, 2009 @10:00AM (#27180065)

    The problem is that IP is like the One Ring. You can fight off one army of lawyers, but then many years later another picks it out of the battlefield and starts the cycle again. Like the One Ring IP always corrupts those who seek to use it. There's no "Mt. Doom" for IP to actually go to die.

  • by JSBiff (87824) on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:16PM (#27182937) Journal

    I like it when companies pursuing litigation of this sort try to attack the largest companies first. Know why? Small companies will often have to settle because they can't afford to fight the suit. Once you sue the two largest vendors, suddenly there is a whole lot of money behind the defense. With Blizzard now part of the lawsuit, I suspect Worlds.com is gonna get beat down in the court room. Even if they are not, it won't be just because the defendents didn't have enough money to mount a defense. If they win, it is more likely that there was some kind of legal merit to their suit (not necessarily guaranteed, mind you, but at least the case should be rigorously challenged by decent defense lawyers).

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