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Reader Comments (62)

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:38PM (Unverified) said

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Are you kidding me?

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:40PM (Unverified) said

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Its like Apocalypse Now for MMOs if these jerk offs get away with sueing all these companies. Its utterly ridiculous...way to go Microsoft for opening Pandora's box. Maybe if we're lucky this company will get enough hate mail from over zealous fan boys scared of losing their game they'll shrink back into the nether regions they crawled out from.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:41PM (Unverified) said

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Well, I think Paltalk won't work on this one because the basic premise of an MMO pre-exists by at least two decades in terms of text based multiuser environments. Also, many visual environments such as first person shooters have had multiuser environments for YEARS before Paltalk as a service (and program) was even in existence. The fact that Microsoft didn't dredge up these facts in their own court case makes me ponder who the hell they paid to represent them as prior art for multiuser environments abound. Especially, for collaborative software applications (and games).

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:42PM (Unverified) said

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Why not just patent "sending data over the internet", that way they can sure every company that has a website? Greedy bastards.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:44PM archipelagos said

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Why any court would allow them to claim something as far reaching as the ability to share a virtual space with more than one person is beyond me. Might as well claim oxygen and start charging people the right to breath it.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:45PM drakino said

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I can't have much pity for those involved here, as all of the above companies regularly file for software patents like this. Overall, the patent system is broken and needs major reform to help both inventors and the overall competitive landscape. Right now it's all just a money grab for lawyers.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:46PM AlamoeJones said

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Idiotic BS like this only happens in Texas...

Posted: Sep 17th 2009 1:15PM (Unverified) said

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Paltalk is in NY and it's some Texas law that allows some loophole in the patent system, I'm sure. It has nothing to do with the geographic location of either company.
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Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:54PM (Unverified) said

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They won a case with Microsoft? Where Have I been living, I can't believe I missed that.

If they can win against Microsoft, they can win against anyone, the amount of trouble MS has been in in the past.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:06PM Myria said

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They didn't win the case, MS settled.
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Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:08PM (Unverified) said

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It's practically the same thing
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Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:12PM Myria said

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From a legal standpoint? No, not even remotely close to the same thing.
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Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:55PM DarthCheese said

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Damn greedy lawyers, what a load of BS.

There were MMOs out way before Paltalk existed.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 4:56PM Nef said

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From the link to their site it appears they do webcam chat-type services? Uhm... ok.

If Microsoft hadn't thrown pocket change at them this wouldn't be an issue. It still shouldn't be.

Here's hoping they get completely thrashed and put out of business.

Posted: Sep 19th 2009 6:28AM (Unverified) said

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Yes, I tried their video chat out way back when to see if it would help me keep connected with my distant family. I had to cancel because they weren't keeping the lobby channels clear of video perverts, and they did the refund runaround for months.

On the IP area, here's a link to a Dilbert cartoon that perfectly expresses the current situation :
http://www.dilbert.com/strips/comic/2009-09-09/
But what do you expect when you leave the door of the official system for creating the future of humanity open to parasites? While the original goal was noble (and so were the people), the patent office has long been corrupted to be a revolving door for lawyers who want to make 150-200 bucks an hour as a corporate patent attorney, and have no accountability whatsoever for the end result. Said lack of accountability means they can write anything that can get through the system, and here we are with patents that are only good for extortive lawsuits.

But this actually might be good in the long run. Jamming up the system with egregious examples of how screwed up it is might build up enough pressure to force some real reform, say the kind that once again lets ordinary people walk in the door with real solutions and walk out with a good, non-obstructive patent.

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Posted: Sep 17th 2009 3:40AM wufiavelli said

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brokentoys had a good write up on how this part of texas is used a lot for crappy law suits like this this. basically ya get a jury full of yocals who cannot comprehends the complexities behind stuff like this (or other industries) and they grant victories to people.

Sure there is more to it then that. But i am a yocal that cannot comprehend it though.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:02PM Eamil said

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Didn't Worlds.com already sue NCSoft and threaten Blizzard and Linden Labs with lawsuits over a patent they supposedly held for the EXACT SAME THING?

http://www.businessinsider.com/worldscom-ceo-were-absolutely-going-to-sue-second-life-and-world-of-warcraft-2009-3

Posted: Sep 18th 2009 8:46PM (Unverified) said

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The NC vs worlds suit is still on going...says so in the article. that's the ongoing case, at least for NCsoft. dunno who turbine is in a fight with.

given that NCsoft has not suspened any services it seems that worlds isn't exactly winning that case
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Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:03PM Myria said

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It's exceedingly unlikely that MS signed anything that didn't flatly state they admitted to no fault, they'd be idiots to do otherwise and no matter what you think of MS they are most certainly not stupid. It's also unlikely that the particulars of the agreement can legally be revealed or used in court.

Basically the whole "MS agreed with us and that makes us unstopable" crap comes from a lawyer for Paltalk (Christopher Donnelly) who is talking out his arse and hoping no one notices.

Cheap scare tactics that are standard procedure in legal proceedings and carry no meaningful weight whatsoever.

Posted: Sep 16th 2009 5:11PM (Unverified) said

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Out of court settlements are not legal precedent. The settlement means nothing to judges hearing the case.

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