Feeds

Patent troll sues Oprah, Sony over online book viewing

'We own the touchy, feely internet'

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

An IP-squatting firm is suing Oprah Winfrey's production company and Sony Electronics over patent infringement for using and promoting software that displays books on the internet.

Illinois Computer Research claims Oprah's Bookclub violates its US Patent 7,11,252 - a method of "Enhancing touch and feel on the internet."

The lawsuit summarizes the patent as "an apparatus and method for obtaining and reviewing excerpts from a digital book for preview prior to purchase, but prevents the reader from obtaining and reviewing the entire book prior to purchase."

That covers, well, just about anyone selling or discussing books online.

ICR claims Oprah's Book Club website uses, sells, and encourages others to use an online book-reading product. While the lawsuit doesn't specify where the site allegedly infringes on the IP, the book club does offer short excerpts online and pitches Amazon's Kindle as "Oprah's favorite new gadget."

(Note: the book excerpts featured on the website doesn't appear to be a fancy, advanced mechanism for reading a preview. They're just basic HTML).

The lawsuit also fingers Sony as a defendant, claiming the electronics giant violates the '252 patent through its Sony Bookreader.

ICR is a holding company that obtained the patent from the "inventor" Scott Harris — a former top-billing IP lawyer for who The Prior Art blog has diligently chronicled a long and sordid past of suing companies over questionable IP. Harris was ousted from the law firm Fish & Richardson for targeting Google, a client of the firm, over the '252 patent.

ICR is currently owned by Florida lawyer James Beauregard Parker. The firm seeks an undisclosed amount of damages.

A copy of the lawsuit is available here. ®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
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
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws
Only 49 politcos voted against DRIP bill
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
Delaware pair nabbed for getting saucy atop Mexican eatery
Burrito meets soft taco in alleged rooftop romp outrage
LightSquared backer sues FCC over spectrum shindy
Why, we might as well have been buying AIR
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.