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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.
I'm claiming human fallibility before I go on.
What I believe happened it:
Worlds sues NCSoft
NCSoft throws a bunch of stumbling blocks in their way
Worlds works on said stumbling blocks
Worlds finishes stumbling block
Worlds pursues lawsuit
Judge throws out lawsuit based on previous settlement
That's what I got from piecing it together from multiple articles through all the legalese.
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.
Yeah and because it's cheaper to pay these @$$hats to go away then to fight them, That's what happens. Then we as the consumer get shafted with the bill since the price of the next game has to go up to cover the loss.
Originally posted by GeezerGamer 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.
Exactly my thoughts/concern. It also stifles new, lesser devs from getting started in the first place too.
Originally posted by hfztt 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...
Even that wouldn't help. As I understand it, they hold several patents, one of which deals with the use of 'their' technology in a 3D environment. But, other patents deal with the use of the tech in any environment. Basically, they can go after any company that has ever produced a mutliplayer game.
You, Cavod and Unreal are, unfortunately, absolutely right. But most companies don't want to take the time to win even if they could, because in the end as I said it's cheaper and less hassle. I wish it didn't work that way, it lets people get away with murder and like Unreal mentioned, it absolutely empowers them to go after more people, which is what they're doing with Blizzard now. I don't like it anymore that you guys do but good luck doing anything about it.
On a positive note, Blizzard really ~does~ have the funds to follow it through till the end. It's really all about whether or not they have the principles to.
"Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."
Sigh, some companies make money by suing others....
The reason why they suing Activision is becasue they have money, and might just settle out of court in order to avoid a lenghty trial.
From reading the actual patents it seems that Worlds INC can sue any one which makes a online game today which is capbale of supporting multiple players, has phasing, instancing, cross "room"/"realm" how ever you want to call it today functinality such as global chat, or global ques and more.
It seems that WI did nothing but patenting "ideas" that nested in just about every other game or software developer in the 90's but were not sufficiently implemented in games and other related sofware untill the last few years.
Take their "earliest" patent for example: http://www.worlds.com/text/PatentNo1_6219045.pdf It basically defined an MMO today, it's like if id patented first person shooters after releasing CW(yes i know it wasnt the first, but it was the first that mattered).
The funny thing is that they've recieved the patent after EQ was launched, and after MMO's began to swtich to 3D.
I really hope that Activision wont cave in like NCSoft did back in 2010 and that Worlds Inc will lose their patent in court.
There are tons of patents that are being aproved for things that were allready "invented" or "concieved" simply becasue there werent filed in the first place.
Many patent clerks which aprove patents do display the best judgment in many cases they do not posses the knowledge to judge the validity of the patent in the first place.
Sofware patents are even more nasty since you do not have to provide a prototype or produce and market a product with in 2 years. For some reason many of the sofware patents rules come from"copyright" laws and not patent laws.
The very idea of patents is slowing down development of new techonologies.
Since this is a USA only patent being contested in an American Court, any ruling that comes from it will only apply to companies that have their headquarters in the USA.
Queue all MMO companies moving out of the USA.
American companies, and government, need to realise that just because a ruling is granted in the USA does not mean it applies to the rest of the world.
If they are successful all they will do is hurt American companies.
If, as Dogma pointed out, the patent was granted after EQ was released, Bliz will be able to claim prior art which will invalidate the patent. I also suspect the patents wont hold up in a court of law as they only patented ideas, and not the way to implement them, and did not actually implement them themselves. Furthermore, a patents strength is reduced if a company does not actively defend it, and since they did nothing to defend their patent since the 90s, until they sued NCSoft(who foolishly settled to get them to go away) the strength of this patent is severely reduced.
Cluck Cluck, Gibber Gibber, My Old Mans A Mushroom
Originally posted by Quirhid 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?
To the contrary, software copyrights are absolutely essential. Without them, either the software industry wouldn't exist at all and we'd be limited to things that geeks code in their free time, or else every piece of commercial software in existence would have DRM vastly more intrusive than anything you've ever seen.
Lets return to first principles on why patents, copyrights, and trademarks exist in the first place. The idea is to encourage more useful research and creative works to be done, so that society can enjoy the benefits. This isn't some new idea; to quote the US Constitution (written in 1787):
"The Congress shall have Power... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;"
(For the benefit of non-Americans, the US Constitution is very unusual, and possibly entirely unique among constitutions in use, in that it gives a list of things that the US federal government can do, and then says that the federal government is not allowed to do anything else that isn't on the list. That's why the copyright clause had to be in there.)
Note the point of copyrights: it's to promote the progress of science and arts. So why do software copyrights do this? Imagine that you've spent $10 million developing a computer game. Once the development is done, making a DVD and packing for the game costs $1 per copy. But you'd better sell each copy for a whole lot more than $1, as you need to make back the $10 million that you spent to develop the game just to break even. And you want to do more than that, as the reason your corporation exists is to make a profit, at least from the perspective of your stockholders.
So on launch day, you start selling copies of your game at $50 each. If there aren't any copyright protections, what will happen? Someone will buy a DVD, start making copies of it, and selling the copies for $2 each. Now no one else is going to pay you $50 for the game, because they can get it for $2. So you get whatever you can sell in the first couple of hours or so, and then after that, you basically can't sell your game at a profit anymore. You've got no hope of making back the $10 million that it cost to develop the game.
If there aren't copyright protections ahead of time, you can figure out that this is going to happen. So what do you do about it? You don't spend $10 million to develop the game in the first place. The company that would have developed the game won't exist, because no one would be willing to invest in a project that is sure to lose money.
The trouble with software patents is that they don't merely say, you can't have this exact code base. They further say, you can't code from scratch anything vaguely similar to this. That doesn't just protect your game against everyone with a DVD burner. That would protect your game against other companies that would spend $10 million to develop their own game. That sort of protection doesn't do much to make your game less likely to be developed in the first place. It does a whole lot to make other games less likely to be developed later, as if other companies have to pay you $1 million to license your computer game patent, that raises the cost of developing their own games.
For that matter, if the goal is to hurry up and patent something so that you can be a patent troll, you don't even care if your own game is any good. Promoting the hasty creation of bad games surely doesn't benefit society.
So why do patents exist in the first place? Consider the pharmaceutical industry, which is probably where they're most essential. There are various compounds that aren't that hard to create, or sometimes even exist in nature, that are tremendously useful as medicine. The hard part is figuring out that they work as medicine and are safe enough to use as such. A drug company may spend several hundred million dollars to develop a drug and do the rigorous testing necessary to get FDA approval.
Once the testing is done, however, making a month's supply of the drug might only cost $5. If generics are allowed to compete immediately, then you have no hope of making back the hundreds of millions of dollars that it cost to get the drug approved in the first place. So you're going to say, forget it, and not bother to develop life-saving medicines.
Furthermore, copyright protection is of no use to you here. The generic version of your drug might not be produced in the same way. It might be something that is naturally occurring, so you can't plausibly claim that it was your invention. The hard part is determining that it has useful medicinal effects while being safe for humans to use.
Software patents cause big problems, as stupid licensing fees and frivolous lawsuits from patent trolls drive up costs for everyone, and that gets passed on to consumers. The only real problem that software copyrights cause is that it lets game designers pull old games off the market entirely.
Now that the Internet makes it cheap and easy to sell things online, I'd favor making it so that if a game (or book or song or whatever) is unavailable to obtain legally for five years, you lose the copyright and it becomes public domain. All that an author would need to do in order to maintain the copyright on an old book for the full 50 years or whatever is to have a deal like what Amazon does, where they'll list books for sale (often from a vanity press imprint) that they don't have any copies of in stock, but if you want to buy one, they'll print one copy of the book for you and mail it.
Originally posted by Remains Yay, another attempt to get legal rights to something like oxygen or gravity! Love those! And I dont mean to offend anyone with this so dont take it personally; but you americans are gaddam nuts!
Doesnt offend me. You are 100% correct. Not that other countries dont have times that look just as bad. I think the movie "Idiocracy" should be required in school. Sometimes it sure feels like thats where this country is heading.
Edited for the neckbeards out there:
I wouldnt trade being an American for anything. Doesnt mean I have to like everything that goes on.
Originally posted by xenogiasEdited for the neckbeards out there:I wouldnt trade being an American for anything. Doesnt mean I have to like everything that goes on.
Originally posted by stragen001 Since this is a USA only patent being contested in an American Court, any ruling that comes from it will only apply to companies that have their headquarters in the USA. Queue all MMO companies moving out of the USA. American companies, and government, need to realise that just because a ruling is granted in the USA does not mean it applies to the rest of the world. If they are successful all they will do is hurt American companies. If, as Dogma pointed out, the patent was granted after EQ was released, Bliz will be able to claim prior art which will invalidate the patent. I also suspect the patents wont hold up in a court of law as they only patented ideas, and not the way to implement them, and did not actually implement them themselves. Furthermore, a patents strength is reduced if a company does not actively defend it, and since they did nothing to defend their patent since the 90s, until they sued NCSoft(who foolishly settled to get them to go away) the strength of this patent is severely reduced.
from the forbes article:
"When Worlds’ initial patents were filed in 1995 the major constraints for multiplayer online gaming were bandwidth and PC processing power."
"These games have been around for years. Why are you going to court now?
The timing for the lawsuit was based upon the additional continuation patents that Worlds has recently received over the prior art, as well as independent analysis."
In no way am I on their side or defending them but they do have a case... as messed up and lacking common sense as it is.
Problem with USA patent system (which unfortunatelly many lobbysts, some private companies and even USA gov tried to spread to other countries) is that it allow to to patent IDEAS and some general , simple hmm mechanisms.
Patent for making a piece of software mimick virtual world with idea of people connecting to it throught internet?
Thing is something like that never should be able to be 'pattentable'.
Similar thing was with Apple I believe patent for 'browsing through photos on touch screen by swapping them from left to right' (or simialr my english sucks today).
Damn seriously things like that never should be able to get a patent.
It is same thing as getting pattent on 'vehicle on wheels that able to move on the gound'.
Patents are needed to protect IMPLEMENTATIONS not ideas.
Protect not concept of engine but SPECIFIC technologies to build certain engine.
Current patent system was working for quite some time ,but in last years it is starting to become a break to technologic progress.
After all - If I invest alot of time & money into building and developing something let's say a program and someone sue me few years after cause he patented idea of a similar programm - then I am better to invest my money into something else than creating and developing things.
Sure I can check up if similar patent exist - but you really really wanna know how much it costs to make an detailed check if IDEA like that was not patented already?
I will answer - dozens of thousands of dollars even for small projects , extensive check may cost hundred of thousands.
Sick system that is in a favour of biggest and richest companies and screwing over all the rest.
I haven't read US patents numbers 8,082,501, 7,493,558, 7,945,856 and 7,181,690 titled “System and Method for Enabling Users to Interact in a Virtual Space”. But it seems to me that what they have patented is the concept of using Distributed computing in an online world. "Worlds’ patents include, but are not limited to, the various aspects of the information transmission and processing that allow the users to view in real time where other users and background objects are in relation to their own position as they move about in the virtual space." Forbes Heck, this sounds like the own Z-Buffering. But realize that these patents are for concepts not implementation (code).
If the A / B lawyers were smart (but what lawyer is?), they would show that Distributed computing is just the implementation of Dynamic memory allocation on a server structure. You know what the boils down to? They didn't invent the shoe, but they patented walking and wearing shoes. So pay up! Also realize that NCSoft has settled out of court on this over City of Heroes.
More Americans trying to control the net.
it seems every week someone is trying to sue Blizzard, like that guy who sued them because the world took to long to travel through without a mount?
The cost to fight an acual case is just rediculous, but what i've seen from Blizzard/activision is that they do not let there pride get hurt....meaning they would probably pay an extra million dollars just to draw out the case and bankrupt that spec of a company.
This is getting funny by the min.
"“Technologies created by Worlds have helped the businesses of virtual worlds gaming and the sale of virtual goods to grow into a multi-billion dollar industry [...] While we are pleased to see that the gaming industry and its rapidly growing customer base have enthusiastically embraced our patented technologies, we deserve fair compensation for their use.”"
Thier latest "game" currnetly in "development" DMC World this picture is from 2008(the earliest):
I've seen better websites built by 12 yr olds, heck even the banner looks like somthing was done in paint...
And ofc their huge offices where 100's of employees develop the latest techonlogies...
For more information contact:Worlds.com, Inc.11 Royal Road Brookline, MA 02445
Patents are useless. There will always be a prior art get out clause. Not to mention Blizz could just buyout Worlds Inc and then cremate them in a very big furnace. Many times. I have never seen a company with a death wish before, it should be interesting.
Sounds like a butt hurt company that couldnt figure out how to make money connecting people online even though they were doing it before everyone else, so now they are going to sue everyone that figured out how to do it profitably.
Unless you can crack open Blizzards code and find a bunch of stuff in there from world's inc there is not a damn thing they can do about online gaming This is almost as bad as someone saying they have a patent on the internet and surfing the web.
Originally posted by Unreal024 Originally posted by hfztt 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...
No, I don't think that's the case....if it were, their patents would be invalidated, as the technologies existed 13 years (minimum) before they were patented (in 1997) by Worlds Inc. Island of kesmai, MPBT, Air warrior all made use of those techs - just that they weren't 3D
There's no doubt the patent system in the U.S. is broken and software patents are a problem.
Don't these trolls sometimes get sent packing by the courts? see Jagex vs. Paltalk
I for one am a fan of companies, like Jagex for example, that take a stand and make an example of these patent trolls. We need more.
As I understand it prior art still applies but for small to medium sized companies the costs of litigation are prohibitive.
I guess we could help by contacting our elected reps, start Twitter campaigns etc. but we have to pick our battles right? I mean now we have CISPA to worry about!
Some links re: software patents
Bilski, of course:
Jagex vs. Paltalk
IP Watchdog on Patent trolls
Analysis of Bilski
Petition to the Whitehouse
If you cut it too short you can always nail a piece on the end.
If you cut it too long then what the hell are you gonna do?
When I applied for a software patent, my company hired an outside patent attorney to help me file it. He explained a couple of things, but one of the most memorable was his description of a patent for a pencil with an eraser.
There was a patent for a lead based pencil. And a separate patent for the eraser. Now, combining the pencil and eraser is yet ANOTHER patent.
In my case, the software was used as a process to produce a physical item, so it qualified to be patented. In 1986, when this happened, software was not really patentable on its own. Since the result of my software process could not be identified as different than if someone had done the process manually, the patent could not be protected, and instead became a company trade secret.
This kind of patent infringement, and companies that specialize in suing for it, has been around a loooong time in the high tech world. Heck, the Apple I had a stolen processor design in it, and Apple had to change it!
------------RIP City of Heroes. One of my favorite MMO's.
Originally posted by Mavacar 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
You know, I use to think it was an absurd judgement until I learned the facts of the case, saw her injuries, and learned the reasoning behind the verdict.
Her burn injuries were horrific. There were already warning labels on the coffee, but they weren't very large. But Mcdonalds had received over 700 hundred complaints and lawsuits from coffee burns in the decade leading upto the incident. The temperature of her coffee was over 180 degrees.
The reasoning for the large settlement was the jury felt 1 day of coffee profits was justified punishment to an entity that ONLY cares about profit, for 700+ complaints and lawsuits of burns from exceedingly hot coffee.
I mean yeah, if you care about a sociopathic entity that only cares about profit, then it does seem like an absurd judgement. But if you care about people, and don't like to see corperations repeatedly harming people and getting away with it, well then,yeah...
Another stupid lawsuit. Seriously this Worlds Inc has been doing it for the past 10 or so years. They keep trying to sue MMO companies hoping for out of court settlement because it's cheaper to settle than let the lawsuit drag on for years. This company has been dead (without any legitimate product or services) for the past decade or so and only shows up on the news when they try to sue some legit MMO company. Their lawsuit is pretty frivulous, ridiculous and highlights what's fucked up in the US Patent system.