|it's over patent infringement
To further today's news of patent infringements, IBM is now suing Amazon over patents that IBM developed during the 1980's. IBM noted that the patents cover a range of technologies used for creating catalogues online and for methods of online ordering. Obviously Amazon uses these types of system on a daily basis, thus making it appear like IBM does have a case. The following patents are what IBM claims have been infringed:
1. US 5,796,967 - Presenting Applications in an Interactive Service.
2. US 5,442,771 - Storing Data in an Interactive Network.
3. US 7,072,849 - Presenting Advertising in an Interactive Service.
4. US 5,446,891 - Adjusting Hypertext Links with Weighted User Goals and Activities.
5. US 5,319,542 - Ordering Items Using an Electronic Catalogue.
In a release, IBM's senior vice president Dr. John E. Kelly III said "We filed this case for a very simple reason. IBM's property is being knowingly and unfairly exploited." Many have argued that patents such as the ones above are too broad in concept, equating to such inventions as the wheel. Some industry experts are demanding that the US patent office and other international patent offices reevaluate the way patents are granted.
According to some reports, IBM developed several of the above patents with Sears during the 1980's. At that time, sites like Amazon and eBay did not even exist. IBM noted that it had attempted to negotiate with Amazon since 2002 but did not come to a satisfactory conclusion with the online retail giant. With Amazon under IBM's radar, it's only a matter of time before other e-tailers such as Walmart.com will be targeted.
Amazon has not responded.