1) Talk to others who got sued, form a single group, hire a lawyer, and fight like hell
2) Talk to others who got sued, and as a group, talk to Amazon and all the other who are big and did not get sued, and cooperate to get a declaratory judgment with the "sponsorship" of the big fish that did not get sued.
This is all about grabbing the low-hanging fruit to go after the people than can defend themselves well. The natural defense is to undo that advantage of the plaintiff.
Everyone knows it's a bogus patent, don't be foolish enough to fall for the trick. Unite.
Channel Intelligence, its directors, high ranking employees and investors are at this time placed on the Information Technology No Fly List. Please do not sell this company or these individuals any form of information technology service.
This includes web hosting, network support, system administration, and even PC repair.
I also urge taxi drivers to drive right by them in the rain and small children to make faces at them in public.
"I’m the Zlio.com CEO. If you are one of the sued companies (like us), please contact me by email: channel at berrebi.org.
We need to discuss together"
# The above is not from me, just quoted from the TC comments!
Where are you incorporated, if at all? If you are not incorporated in Delaware, do you have customers in Delaware? If not, did you advertise for customers in Delaware?
I read the filing. The person that filed it is really stretching to get Delaware as the place for all the suits. I don't think that many of these companies will be forced to litigate in Delaware. You are included in that assessment.
I am not a lawyer, but I am a second year law student. If you want more information, post here or feel free to send me an email. I relatively near you in Mass, too.
I'm not incorporated and haven't thought about Delaware in particular as a place to advertise Voo2do. There are certainly Voo2do users in Delaware (and in most other places in the world).
The only income I've received to date from Voo2do has been donations from people who found it useful. If you consider the cost of the hosting, Voo2do has been a net money loser for me for many years. But it's led to a lot of other great contacts and given me a lot of satisfaction from helping other people.
PS: Ask pg to delete your post.
Mass. Rule 4: http://www.lawlib.state.ma.us/mrcp4.html
Federal Rule 4: http://www.law.cornell.edu/rules/frcp/Rule4.htm
Did you receive a summons or was it just a printout of what we saw in the TC article? Insufficient service is grounds for dismissal. The plaintiff has time to correct, though.
You should see if there are any users in Delaware. If not, I doubt you can be compelled to court there. Even if you do have users in Delaware, it is a stretch.
For everyone on YC News, this is a reason to incorporate in your home state, not Delaware. Incorporate in Delaware if you want VC funding. Otherwise, stay in your home state. If you incorporate in Delaware, or any other state for that matter, courts automatically grant personal jurisdiction in that state. Basically, that means you have to go to court there.
This is also a reason to incorporate. Right now shimon is personally liable for damages, if any.
If you are making something for others to use, incorporate. It will cost you a few hundred dollars per year in filing fees, but that is just a type of insurance against times like this.
there's something that can help us fight patent trolling: http://www.peertopatent.org/
It's a USPTO pilot project that let's the public review and give feedback to some current patent applications. I'm sure this will help cut some bogus patent claims if people just participate.
"Michael Arrington - July 17th, 2008 at 2:33 am PDT
I think literacy needs to become a requirement to get a job at the PTO. Morons."
(Sorry, I could not resist)
You're also in good company. I would take pride in that at the very least.
Spent about $1M.
It's a great way to put a small competitor out of business.
Alain - fairsoftware.net
I look at a company like Remember The Milk and wonder how much they could possibly afford to pay. A quick back of the envelope calculation based on compete.com, 170k visitors/month. Let's say that 80k are customers and 8k are paying customers ($25/year), and that their yearly revenue is $200k. They have three or four full time people and increasing traffic.
I guess a company like that could afford to pay $10-20k/annual for a license. That might even be considered a good business decision given that with their current revenue they probably don't have a lot of money in the bank to fight a legal battle now, but that with their growth they have future profits that should make this a minor annoyance.
If you and/or the other defendants don't litigate the validity of the patent well and lose that issue, future parties are barred from re-litigating that issue.
A strategy of a small guy is to try and bring in a large guy to litigate an issue that will be very important to them in the future (i.e. eBay, Amazon, or whoever else may be infringing the patent).
i'm sure amazon will want to help somehow as they most certainly have prior art. and didn't they set up a website years ago to help people discover prior art?
This looks like potential Prior Art:
voo2do is a great service; I used it quite extensively two years ago.
I don't blame the patent guys for not reading it. "Man, that sentence said "said" like 487 million times! Pass that thing on, dude."
Stamp of approval here.
That being said, the legal system most likely has grown purposely obtuse over the years. They do, in fact, collect some of the highest rates per hour of nearly any profession to argue about what the definition of "is" is.
1. Ignore patents completely and hope for the best.
2. Have trouble sleeping, knowing that you might have to spend a large amount of money on a lawsuit that you will probably win anyway.
BTW, I live in Brazil where software patents are not considered valid.
But the above US companies could try to sue US residents for the patent violation.
And I agree: stop talking in public about it right away.