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I read Matt Blumberg’s post on Silly, Silly Patent Nonsense this morning. It concerns a bulk email patent that was issued in 2003 that is being used to sue InfoUSA for patent infringement. Matt doesn’t have the detailed data, nor do I, but if it’s true I’ve got to believe it’s totally bogus.
I was involved in a patent suit of bulk email in the 1990’s. I am aware of prior art dating back to the 1980’s. The chance of there being anything non-obvious here is approximately zero. My suit settled for $1 and a cross-license after $1 million of aggregate attorney’s fees and a bunch of unnecessary hard feelings (some of which have cleared due to the fundamental good karma of some of the people involved.)
I despise this stuff. Hopefully the facts will come out in the next few days that nothing of this sort is going on. But – if it is – I volunteer to be an expert witness in the case.