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E-DATA collects patent licensing fees in Europe
By brian, Section News
Posted on Sat Jan 24th, 2004 at 11:11:14 GMT
[From FFII] E-Data has made licensing deals in Europe with Microsoft, Tiscali and On Demand Distribution (OD2) for the controversial "Freeny" patent EP0195098, "System for reproducing information in material objects at a point of sale location". This patent has been the subject of extensive litigation in the United States where E-Data has attempted to sue companies offering commercial downloads over the internet -- an activity that it claims is covered by the patent.


According to the news article at Golem.de , in return for an unknown royalty payment, these three companies are now allowed to offer music for download.

The only detail of the licensing deals that is disclosed seems to be that OD2 is in the start phase and will therefore not pay much. It is not quite unreasonable to assume that the other two are not paying much, if anything, either, but are just allowing E-Data to use their name to promote their patent enforcement campaign.

The article links to the text version of the e-data/freeny patent on the swpat.ffii.org site, where the broad claims can be read.

The E-Data/Freeny patent is much older than similarly broad video-on-demand patents which Acacia recently obtained from the European Patent Office (EPO) and is also trying to enforce in Europe.

(Story edited for GNU Friends, original posting at FFII.org)

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