Rembrandt IP Management have subjected both Seagate and Western Digital to federal lawsuist, alleging that both manufacturers have infringed on a couple of patents Rembrandt previously purchased from an inventor.
Uri Cohen filed back in 1997 patents that “cover low-noise toroidal thin film read/write heads”. After discovering that WD and Seagate apparently used his invention without compensating him, and realizing that he did not have the money to seek legal redress, Cohen decided to sell some interest in his patents to Rembrandt.
The patent lawsuit covers a wide variety of hard drive models, including Seagate’s Free Agent and Barracuda series, as well asWestern Digital’s My Passport and Caviar lines. How far will Rembrandt’s legal action go? A victory by the patent aggregator could force Seagate and Western Digital to pony up licensing fees—and perhaps encourage the development of more affordable and reliable SSDs?
Rembrandt markets itself as a company that helps independent inventors "commercialize their intellectual property in a way that would never have been possible if they acted alone." Yet you can bet this development will provide more ammunition for critics of the American patent system.
how many lawsuits have you read about this month?
New Slogan: "The US Patent System.... Why turn a legit profit, when you can sue over a patent instead?"
Honestly, tell me what I'm missing, cuz, I really don't see this guy in the wrong at all. I see Seagate and WD. Sorry, but, that would be like you going out infringing on a crap load of ideas, then bitching about getting sued when you knew they were already protected.
Good job America, you just let other countries look smarter...
Don't be sorry. You're right!! > YUP!
He's not in the wrong. These are the kinds of very legitimate things the USPTO is designed to function for. It's very simple: Big company takes advantage of a development by a little guy, and little guy does not have resources to combat it, so big company wins. This is not the first time.
The only counter to this is of there is some sort of R&D covenant between this garage developer and the corporate body.
Examples like "Superdude777" are good ones of perpetuating ignorance. The company is liable to this guy. That's why it's a PATENT instead of a TRADE SECRET.
It would be more accurate for SuperDUD to make an argement against a company like RAMBUS over their lawsuit activity over the last 20 or so years.
The other people in here are speaking the consumer language based on the predictable outcome of higher prices and how a lawsuit will affect them. I hate the idea of paying the additional licensing fee as well, although it does not make it "right".
If the conditions of this article are true, this *inventor* is legally owed 20 years worth of a cut on whatever he invented (assuming a granted licensee to use the patent). It was new, it was novel, it was not a naturally occurring "thing". It is a machine (and possibly a process), both of which can be patented. He was issued a patent, and there is no known prior art. Period.
I'm no lawyer, just have a small amount of engineering law background...
I believe, for these corporations, the patent is valid for 20 years (terminating in 2017). I guess it was a gamble on whether or not this would continue undiscovered for the duration of the patent, not counting on things like terminal disclaimers, possible extensions, etc.