Feeds

Sony slaps patent suit on PlayStation emulator developer

Connectix jubilation premature

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Top marks to Sony lawyers for one thing at least: these guys really know how to spot an opportunity and mine it. Last week, the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal reversed a judgement made by the San Francisco District Court which banned the sale of emulator developer Connectix's Virtual Game Station (VGS) PlayStation-on-a-Mac software. The ban followed claims by Sony that Connectix had infringed its copyrights in the development of VGS. However, the Appeals Court ruled that the copies Connectix made of the PlayStation BIOS while VGS was being written were legal under fair use law. The shipping version of VGS contains no Sony-owned code, something that Sony has never contested. The basis for the Appeals Court ruling, made by Circuit Judge William C Canby, Jr., was that the PlayStation BIOS contains elements protected by copyright law and other parts that are not. So while the actual sequences of instructions are Sony's copyright -- ie. how tasks are achieved -- many of ideas and concepts embodied within it -- the tasks themselves -- are not so protected by copyright law. That, said Canby, is the province of patent law. However, since Sony sought the preliminary injunction using copyright law, patent infringement issues could not be taken into consideration. So Canby lifted the preliminary injunction. Following Canby's lead, Sony lawyers have now charged Connectix with patent infringement in an attempt to get VGS banned again. The Mac developer has already begun selling VGS from its Web site, and last week bullishly announced it would soon begin shipping a Windows version. Maybe Connectix should have read the ruling a little more carefully before blowing the victory trumpets. In fact, this is just smart lawyering from the word go. Sony reckoned it could win using the copyright argument alone, so why use the patent argument too? This way, it still has a weapon with which to fight Connectix, despite losing the appeal. The patent argument is weaker than the copyright consideration, but it still brings with it the possibility of a fresh preliminary injunction blocking the sale of VGS -- which is really all Sony cares about. And Sony still has its allegations that VGS encourages piracy to call upon should this latest challenge fail too. ®

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Chips are down at Broadcom: Thousands of workers laid off
Cellphone baseband device biz shuttered
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.