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Worlds Inc sues Activ-Bliz over virtual worlds patent... who's next?

CavodCavod Brookfield, WIPosts: 295Member

http://www.forbes.com/sites/johngaudiosi/2012/04/13/worlds-inc-explains-why-its-suing-activision-blizzard-over-world-of-warcraft-and-call-of-duty/

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Call-of-Duty-Patent-Infringement-World-of-Warcraft-Worlds-Inc-NCSoft,15327.html

 

I'm not a lawyer so don't quote me.  What it seems is that World's Inc has a patent over 3D online virtual worlds that seems to apply to every MMO and other online games.

 

This could have a significant impact on MMOs and online gaming.  <theskyisfalling>

We really need separate forums for every newly launched game. There can be the anti-<MMO> one and there can be the 'what general discussion should be' one. All the lamenting can happen together where each can find solace in like minded can't-move-on-ers leaving the rest of us to actually move forward and discuss meaningful and relevant topics.

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Comments

  • adam_noxadam_nox hays, KSPosts: 2,073Member Uncommon

    doubtful.  every so often some new absurd patent comes to light that involves technology.  like apple trying to pretend that it owns the patent to the general idea of a touchscreen tablet or an appstore. 

  • CavodCavod Brookfield, WIPosts: 295Member

    Originally posted by adam_nox

    doubtful.  every so often some new absurd patent comes to light that involves technology.  like apple trying to pretend that it owns the patent to the general idea of a touchscreen tablet or an appstore. 

    I was being silly about the sky is falling comment but do note this from the forbes comment section:

     

    "The fact that Susman Godfrey (a reputable IP firm) is taking them on with a solid lead attorney, and on contingency, seems to indicate that the firm believes these patents are much stronger now than they were before and that there are infringers. They only get paid if they win or settle."

     

    Also, NCSoft settled out of court with Worlds Inc back in 2010.

     

    It really seems like typical legal-fu b.s. trying to get it's grubby lil hands into everything it legally can, despite reason.

    We really need separate forums for every newly launched game. There can be the anti-<MMO> one and there can be the 'what general discussion should be' one. All the lamenting can happen together where each can find solace in like minded can't-move-on-ers leaving the rest of us to actually move forward and discuss meaningful and relevant topics.

  • VicodinTacoVicodinTaco Erie, PAPosts: 735Member Uncommon

    What will probably end up happening is that Blizzard will actually lose the case.

    BUT, it'll be something to the effect of "Yes, you patented the door hinge, but we designed and built the House.  So here's $39.99 for 5 door hinges."

  • QuizzicalQuizzical Posts: 14,765Member Uncommon

    Some lawsuits are filed in the hopes that the other side will settle just to make you go away, because it's cheaper than fighting and winning in court.  There's also a lot of uncertainty in what will happen with software patents if the case does go to court.

    Software patents should be abolished.  The first one wasn't filed until 1987, and somehow the computer industry got along fine before then.  Software should still be protected by copyrights and trademarks, which are plenty enough to ensure that people who write good software can get paid for it.  Just not patents.

  • RemainsRemains MalmöPosts: 375Member

    Yay, another attempt to get legal rights to something like oxygen or gravity! Love those! image

    And I dont mean to offend anyone with this so dont take it personally; but you americans are gaddam nuts! image

  • KakkzookaKakkzooka Waterbury, CTPosts: 591Member

    Maybe patent trolling will be the real WoW killer.

     

    Probably not. Their suit against NCSoft was settled years ago, however, the settlement strengthens the claim of Worlds' as rights holder.  The best defense that Activision/Blizzard will have is the ubiquitiousness of MMORPG architectual design - from server/client communication to the virtual spaces themselves. There are only so many ways that you can create a virtual space for multi-user interaction.

    I don't think this will have an over arching impact on all MMORPG companies, it may only affect Activision/Blizzard if Worlds' can show that Blizzard had access to World's systems and then didn't recompensate or pay a licensing fee for the use of Worlds' systems.

    There are only so many ways to make vanilla ice cream.

    Re: SWTOR

    "Remember, remember - Kakk says 'December.'"

  • CavodCavod Brookfield, WIPosts: 295Member

    Originally posted by Remains

    Yay, another attempt to get legal rights to something like oxygen or gravity! Love those! image

    And I dont mean to offend anyone with this so dont take it personally; but you americans are gaddam nuts! image

    Not offend but yeah... it's far from 'us americans' and more like those legal crazies wanting something for nothing whenever they can get it.  Rest assured, the majority of us are getting a bad rep from these nut jobs in the minority.

     

     

    on a side note...

     

     

    Ha-ppy Birrrr-th day toooo y... oh wait, STOP!!!!

    We really need separate forums for every newly launched game. There can be the anti-<MMO> one and there can be the 'what general discussion should be' one. All the lamenting can happen together where each can find solace in like minded can't-move-on-ers leaving the rest of us to actually move forward and discuss meaningful and relevant topics.

  • AntariousAntarious Greenville, SCPosts: 2,802Member

    Cool I guess I'll go see if Randy Farmer's blog is still active.   This should be interesting...

     

    If you don't know who Randy Farmer is... its worth looking into.  I actually was a beta tester for Habitat.. so maybe its only interesting to me.   *grabs pop corn*

     

    *edit*  I guess his blog isn't actively updated since they started working on the spiritual descendant of Habitat... oh well lol... I know during the NCSoft thing it was a great read.   The blog was interesting just becuase he was one of the pioneers of the tech for the MMO's we play today.

    Moderator's on this site allow certain posters to create endless troll threads. Yet "warn" people for giving recommendations... account *pending* deletion because.. why bother.

  • zymurgeistzymurgeist Pittsville, VAPosts: 5,211Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Cavod

    Originally posted by adam_nox

    doubtful.  every so often some new absurd patent comes to light that involves technology.  like apple trying to pretend that it owns the patent to the general idea of a touchscreen tablet or an appstore. 

    I was being silly about the sky is falling comment but do note this from the forbes comment section:

     

    "The fact that Susman Godfrey (a reputable IP firm) is taking them on with a solid lead attorney, and on contingency, seems to indicate that the firm believes these patents are much stronger now than they were before and that there are infringers. They only get paid if they win or settle."

     

    Also, NCSoft settled out of court with Worlds Inc back in 2010.

     

    It really seems like typical legal-fu b.s. trying to get it's grubby lil hands into everything it legally can, despite reason.

     They'll go broke trying to sue Blizzard. The size of the war chest matters, a lot.

    "Strong and bitter words indicate a weak cause" ~Victor Hugo

  • DraemosDraemos Antartica, AKPosts: 1,469Member

    Originally posted by Cavod

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/johngaudiosi/2012/04/13/worlds-inc-explains-why-its-suing-activision-blizzard-over-world-of-warcraft-and-call-of-duty/

    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Call-of-Duty-Patent-Infringement-World-of-Warcraft-Worlds-Inc-NCSoft,15327.html

     

    I'm not a lawyer so don't quote me.  What it seems is that World's Inc has a patent over 3D online virtual worlds that seems to apply to every MMO and other online games.

     

    This could have a significant impact on MMOs and online gaming. 

    Again?  NCsoft must have settled w/ them.    And no, it won't be anything meaningful.  The best they can hope for is for a settlement for an undisclosed amount from Blizzard just to get rid of them..  Activision has a hell of a lot more capital and sway in the US than NCsoft did, so they might just bury them in lawyers.

     

    Worlds.com hasn't made a meaningful piece of tech in well over a decade.  I'm pretty sure the patent itself is from like 1994.  The company exists purely to put litigation into play  to leech off actual successful businesses, they're basically a vulture business.

     

  • MavacarMavacar GothenburgPosts: 328Member

    First I was starting to laugh...

    then I remembered this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liebeck_v._McDonald%27s_Restaurants - 2,7 million for burning herself on McDonalds coffee with one claim that "The cup had no warning label for hot beverage", don't get me wrong I'm thankful for that her medical bills were payed for and a little extra - just not 2,7 million because that's just a screwed up justice system.

    So then I got sad for western mmo's cause I trust the justice system over there just as much as I would trust Sarah Palin with a copy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species

  • DeserttFoxxDeserttFoxx North York, ONPosts: 2,360Member Uncommon

    What a stupid case.

     

    I know they hope blizzard throws some nuisance change at them, but i sincerily hope blizzard just takes 1 month of subs from WoW and wipes worlds.inc off the face of the earth.

     

    Who the hell are they? Do they make games? No! Do they make any sort of social media? No! They patent existing technology so that they can suck some fast cash out. 

     

    The US legal system is so weak, that it even allows them to do something like that. Did blizzard create 3d worlds? Of course not, they just see the money and they think they can do it.

    Quotations Those Who make peaceful resolutions impossible, make violent resolutions inevitable. John F. Kennedy

    Life... is the shit that happens while you wait for moments that never come - Lester Freeman

    Lie to no one. If there 's somebody close to you, you'll ruin it with a lie. If they're a stranger, who the fuck are they you gotta lie to them? - Willy Nelson

  • AntariousAntarious Greenville, SCPosts: 2,802Member

    Originally posted by Quizzical

    Software patents should be abolished.  The first one wasn't filed until 1987, and somehow the computer industry got along fine before then.  Software should still be protected by copyrights and trademarks, which are plenty enough to ensure that people who write good software can get paid for it.  Just not patents.

     

    In my one goofy reply when I was talking about Randy Farmer he actually talked about this.   He said nobody patented this stuff back then for a few reasons.   Most of them were just doing something they really enjoyed doing and they never really thought about it being worth money.

     

    Farmer was one of the two co-developers on Habitat which is where the tech "Worlds Inc" claims to own really came from.   Their patent popped up if you look it up.. I believe in the mid 1990's.   I know it was at least 10 years after Morningstar and Farmer developed it... it just wasn't patented then.

     

    Which is the issue... Worlds Inc.. didn't create or invent anything.   What they patented was someone elses work... which as noted was done over a decade before they "patented it".   The irony being the thief is the one trying to get money out of other people for "stealing".

     

    ^^  That of course is just my point of view on it.   Tho I find it hard to see it any other way because none of the people who patented the work... ever worked for Lucas Arts (the development company for Habitat).   So they don't even have someone with hands on... to say they were part of the process.   Everything in Worlds Inc patent.. existed in Habitat... you can't invent something... after its been invented.   Nor can you own.. something that belongs to someone else... If anyone owns the tech at best it would be Fijitsu as they are the ones who bought Habitat and renamed it (they still own and operate it as Club Caribe).

    Moderator's on this site allow certain posters to create endless troll threads. Yet "warn" people for giving recommendations... account *pending* deletion because.. why bother.

  • DraemosDraemos Antartica, AKPosts: 1,469Member

    Originally posted by DeserttFoxx

    What a stupid case.

     

    I know they hope blizzard throws some nuisance change at them, but i sincerily hope blizzard just takes 1 month of subs from WoW and wipes worlds.inc off the face of the earth.

     

    Who the hell are they? Do they make games? No! Do they make any sort of social media? No! They patent existing technology so that they can suck some fast cash out. 

     

    The US legal system is so weak, that it even allows them to do something like that. Did blizzard create 3d worlds? Of course not, they just see the money and they think they can do it.

    Their claim to fame is making a 2nd rate virtual world environments than range in 8-16MBs in size.  In otherwords, they don't make shit.  Since 2008, the only focus of the company has been litigation on patents.  They don't even have a technical staff.

  • DeserttFoxxDeserttFoxx North York, ONPosts: 2,360Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Draemos

    Originally posted by DeserttFoxx

    What a stupid case.

     

    I know they hope blizzard throws some nuisance change at them, but i sincerily hope blizzard just takes 1 month of subs from WoW and wipes worlds.inc off the face of the earth.

     

    Who the hell are they? Do they make games? No! Do they make any sort of social media? No! They patent existing technology so that they can suck some fast cash out. 

     

    The US legal system is so weak, that it even allows them to do something like that. Did blizzard create 3d worlds? Of course not, they just see the money and they think they can do it.

    There claim to fame is making a virtual world environment for Aerosmith.  Yes, the band.  In the 1990s...

    What did they make? a win 3.1 based chat room? an irc channel?

    Quotations Those Who make peaceful resolutions impossible, make violent resolutions inevitable. John F. Kennedy

    Life... is the shit that happens while you wait for moments that never come - Lester Freeman

    Lie to no one. If there 's somebody close to you, you'll ruin it with a lie. If they're a stranger, who the fuck are they you gotta lie to them? - Willy Nelson

  • waynejr2waynejr2 West Toluca Lake, CAPosts: 4,469Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Quizzical

    Some lawsuits are filed in the hopes that the other side will settle just to make you go away, because it's cheaper than fighting and winning in court.  There's also a lot of uncertainty in what will happen with software patents if the case does go to court.

    Software patents should be abolished.  The first one wasn't filed until 1987, and somehow the computer industry got along fine before then.  Software should still be protected by copyrights and trademarks, which are plenty enough to ensure that people who write good software can get paid for it.  Just not patents.

    Software patents should be abolished.  Can imagine if John McCarthy got a patent on the IF Statment?

    Back in the day, you couldn't use software as a patent and anything had to be implemented in hardware to the patent.  As the Intellectual Property movement grew, courts established a right to software patents setting a new rule of law.  20+ years ago, judges were really not savy about these things.  But ultimately the driving force behind it all was Big Business.

    Just look at the Apple vs Microsoft look and feel of windowing systems court case which was lost because neither of them invented windowing systems.  Heck, neither of them were the first commercial systems with windowing.

  • QuirhidQuirhid TamperePosts: 5,969Member Common

    Originally posted by Quizzical

    Some lawsuits are filed in the hopes that the other side will settle just to make you go away, because it's cheaper than fighting and winning in court.  There's also a lot of uncertainty in what will happen with software patents if the case does go to court.

    Software patents should be abolished.  The first one wasn't filed until 1987, and somehow the computer industry got along fine before then.  Software should still be protected by copyrights and trademarks, which are plenty enough to ensure that people who write good software can get paid for it.  Just not patents.

    Both copyrights and patents need to be revised but copyrights are worse imo. Patents last for 20 years max but copyright for 50-100 years (laws vary). Can you imagine using a program or a piece of code that is 20 years old?

    I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been -Wayne Gretzky

  • gaeanprayergaeanprayer Somewhere Out There, PAPosts: 2,320Member Uncommon

    Gee this sounds familiar, I wonder why-Oh, yeah:

     

    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2009/01/06/ncsoft-sued-by-worlds-com/1

     

    It didn't work before, it won't work this time. They're a broke company looking for a hand-out, that's all.

    "Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."

  • CavodCavod Brookfield, WIPosts: 295Member

    Originally posted by gaeanprayer

    Gee this sounds familiar, I wonder why-Oh, yeah:

     

    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2009/01/06/ncsoft-sued-by-worlds-com/1

     

    It didn't work before, it won't work this time. They're a broke company looking for a hand-out, that's all.

    But unfortunately it did work, at least to some degree.  The second link in the OP touches on NCSoft settling out of court in 2010.

    We really need separate forums for every newly launched game. There can be the anti-<MMO> one and there can be the 'what general discussion should be' one. All the lamenting can happen together where each can find solace in like minded can't-move-on-ers leaving the rest of us to actually move forward and discuss meaningful and relevant topics.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,636Member Uncommon

    Worlds Inc is the Tim Langdell of corporations.

     

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • SonicTHISonicTHI -Posts: 149Member

    The penguin faggots strike again.

    It worked on NCSoft so there s no reason it wont work on Blizz.

    The only way Blizz could win is disputing the patenting itself since games with the same patent already existed before the penguin faggots claimed it.

  • gaeanprayergaeanprayer Somewhere Out There, PAPosts: 2,320Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Cavod

    Originally posted by gaeanprayer

    Gee this sounds familiar, I wonder why-Oh, yeah:

     

    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2009/01/06/ncsoft-sued-by-worlds-com/1

     

    It didn't work before, it won't work this time. They're a broke company looking for a hand-out, that's all.

    But unfortunately it did work, at least to some degree.  The second link in the OP touches on NCSoft settling out of court in 2010.

    It didn't. You settle out of court when you don't have a firm case. Meaning, if Worlds really thought they could win, they wouldn't be "settling" for anything.

    These are multi-billion dollar companies in a multi-trillion dollar industry, it's FAR easier to just throw people some cash (they probably won't miss it) so they shut up and go away than it is to take the time (and PR) to follow a lawsuit through to the end. Many of them go on for years, and often it's cheaper to pay people off than to pay for lawyers and court fees for a prolonged court battle. 

    Cost of doing business, an unfortunate truth.

    "Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."

  • GorweGorwe ZagrebPosts: 2,472Member Uncommon
    With the advent of internet and ever more rapid software development, current laws have to change. Because when in ten years three generations of computers pass, it is only nonsensical thing to copyright something for 20+ years(eternity in informatics).

    That's all I have to say about that.
  • hfztthfztt GlostrupPosts: 839Member Uncommon

    I guess you just haveto build in the relativity theroy into you rendering engine, then you are working in 4D and thus not under this patent...

    I hate silly patents...

  • StizzledStizzled Springfield, MOPosts: 1,263Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by gaeanprayer

    Originally posted by Cavod


    Originally posted by gaeanprayer

    Gee this sounds familiar, I wonder why-Oh, yeah:

     

    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2009/01/06/ncsoft-sued-by-worlds-com/1

     

    It didn't work before, it won't work this time. They're a broke company looking for a hand-out, that's all.

    But unfortunately it did work, at least to some degree.  The second link in the OP touches on NCSoft settling out of court in 2010.

    It didn't. You settle out of court when you don't have a firm case. Meaning, if Worlds really thought they could win, they wouldn't be "settling" for anything.

    These are multi-billion dollar companies in a multi-trillion dollar industry, it's FAR easier to just throw people some cash (they probably won't miss it) so they shut up and go away than it is to take the time (and PR) to follow a lawsuit through to the end. Many of them go on for years, and often it's cheaper to pay people off than to pay for lawyers and court fees for a prolonged court battle. 

    Cost of doing business, an unfortunate truth.

    That is exactly why it did work. Worlds went after NCSoft for compesation and they got it. The fact that NCSoft paid them to go away only strengthens the case against Activision-Blizzard. If Blizzard then pays them to go away they will just go after next largest company, most likely EA or Sony. Their patents cover pretty much every multiplayer game ever made. This company will never stop leeching off the work of others if these companies keep paying them to go away.


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