p2pnet.net News:- These days, everyone in the established commercial sector is suing everyone else, or thinking about it, and the latest to get in on the act is Compression Labs.
Remember back when it could take literally hours to load a digital image because of the size?
Then among other technologies, along came .jpg or .jpeg – short for ‘Joint Photographic Experts Group’ – with compression abilities that allowed images to be seriously reduced without losing definition
Forgent Networks owns Compression Labs which in turn owns the patent on .jpg and now Compression Labs is suing a whole raft of companies for infringing the patent.
Forgent “has initiated litigation against 31 companies for infringement of United States Patent No. 4,698,672 (the ’672 Patent) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division,” it says on its web site here.
“Over the last two years, Forgent’s intellectual property business has generated approximately $90 million from licensing the ’672 Patent to 30 different companies in Asia, Europe and the United States. Forgent has sought to reach agreements on numerous occasions with all these companies, but as of today, none of the defendants have chosen to license.”
But the Federal Trade Commission wonders if Compression Labs, “played fair during the Internet Engineering Task Force’s (IETF) standards-setting process for JPEG, which took place in the late 1980s and very early 1990s,” says OverClockers here.
“If it decides the company acted improperly, for example by not disclosing its patent application, the FTC could ask the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office to invalidate the patent.
“If this is the case, all of the defendants could be let off the hook.”
Lined up as defendants are: Adobe Systems, Agfa Corporation, Apple Computer , Axis Communications Incorporated, Canon USA, Concord Camera Corporation , Creative Labs Incorporated, Dell Incorporated, Eastman Kodak Company, Fuji Photo Film Co USA, Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Gateway Inc, Hewlett-Packard Company, International Business Machines Corp, JASC Software, JVC Americas Corporation, Kyocera Wireless Corporation, Macromedia Inc, Matsushita Electric Corporation of America, Oce’ North America Incorporated, Onkyo Corporation, PalmOne Inc, Panasonic Communications Corporation of America, Panasonic Mobile Communications Development Corporation of USA, Ricoh Corporation, Riverdeep Incorporated (d.b.a. Broderbund), Savin Corporation, Thomson SA, Toshiba Corporation and Xerox Corporation.
Well, they say a picture is worth 1,000 words. So what with inflation, etc …