The patent row between Redmond and Canadian firm i4i has been a patent disaster for the former. Microsoft’s remaining hopes now rest on the U.S. Supreme Court, which in November, 2010 granted Microsoft’s petition for writ of certiorari for review of the case. But i4i, which has been winning (feel free to replace with the recent neologism “bi-winning”) pretty much all the battles in this patent war, once again seems assured of victory. According to the Canadian company, 22 amicus (or friend-of-the-court) briefs , including one by the United States government, have been filed with the U.S. Supreme Court in its support.
The controversial letter that marked the beginning of the end for Mark Hurd’s five-year reign as Hewlett-Packard’s CEO is about to be made public. The public release of the missive accusing Hurd of sexual harassment was ordered late Thursday by Delaware Chancery Judge Donald Parsons in a shareholder lawsuit against HP (Ernesto Espinoza v Hewlett Packard Co, Delaware Chancery Court, No. 6000).
Sony has been dealt a severe blow by a European court in its ongoing patent battle with LG. According to the Guardian, the latter has been granted a preliminary injunction on the import of PS3 consoles into Europe by the civil court of justice in the Hague, thus requiring European custom officials to seize all PS3 shipments for at least 10 days. Hit the jump for more.
That didn’t take too long, did it? Embattled hacker George Francis Hotz, aka Geohot, who is being sued by Sony for jailbreaking the PS3, has announced that the legal defense fund he launched on Saturday, February 19 is now closed for fresh donations, having met its initial funding goal within a couple of days.
A federal class action lawsuit alleges "AT&T bills systematically overstate the amount of data used on each data transaction involving an iPhone or iPad account," Electronista reports. The lawsuit likens the situation to a tampered gas pump that "charges for a full gallon when it pumps only nine-tenths of a gallon."
Patrick Hendricks, who's named as the plaintiff in the suit, hired a consulting firm to investigate the matter. After a two month study, the firm alleges that Web traffic was frequently inflated by 7 to 14 percent, though sometimes as much as 300 percent. Because it's usually done in small increments, subscribers aren't likely to notice, though the cumulative effect could lead to a "significant portion" of AT&T's data revenues.
Sony opened a legal can of worms last April when it chose to withdraw support for PS3’s “Other OS” feature with the introduction of firmware version 3.21, citing concerns about the system’s security. But the company soon found itself at the receiving end of a flurry of class action lawsuits from console owners feeling shortchanged by the removal of a feature that once figured prominently in marketing campaigns. The feature allowed other operating systems to be installed on non-slim PS3s.
"Sony claims a universal right to change or remove functionality from the gaming console. The Consumer Council strongly believes there needs to be a limit to what constitutes a reasonable change to products we buy—and that terms of service that grant the manufacturer full access to literally downgrade the product or limit the functionality are unreasonable and in clear violation of the Marketing Control Act," Øyvind H. Kaldestad of the Consumer Council told ArsTechnica.
"When a company use [sic] terms like 'updates' or 'upgrades,' it is reasonable to expect a significant improvement of the product and not the risk of being stuck with a lesser product."
The Consumer council also lambasted consumer electronics companies like Sony for abusing after-sale access to connected devices “to do almost whatever he or she wants” under the pretext of enhancing these devices through software updates.
Filing of claims in the settlement of the class-action lawsuit that was brought against NVIDIA a couple of years ago for shipping defective GPUs inside certain Dell, HP and Apple notebooks is now underway. It was alleged that the faulty NVIDIA parts undermined the performance of the affected notebooks, but the graphics chip maker eventually reached a settlement in the class-action lawsuit in September, 2010. The settlement was approved by the court in December.
Those who bought the affected laptops are eligible to file a claim for replacement or reimbursement or both, according to the website NVIDIA has set up for the settlement. All important information with regards to the settlement and the filing of claims, including lists of affected models and symptoms covered, can be found on the site. Those at the receiving end of the company’s faulty parts have until March 14, 2011 to file their claims.
Some of the problems that users of the affected notebooks had to put up with include: distorted or scrambled video (all), complete loss of video output (all), garbled images (Dell/HP), and failure to detect wireless network (HP).
As the saying goes, 'Keep your friends close, and sue your customers.' Wait, that isn't exactly right, but it's the motto Sony's sticking with as it takes legal action against a band of hackers who uncovered and published security codes for the PlayStation 3 console, BBC News reports.
Sony named 21-year-old George Hotz and more than 100 others associated with a hacking group known as "fail0verflow" in its lawsuit.
"I am a firm believer in digital rights," Hotz said. "I would expect a company that prides itself on intellectual property to be well versed in the provisions of the law, so I am disappointed in Sony's current action. I have spoken with legal counsel and I feel comfortable that Sony's action against me doesn't have any basis."
If George Hotz sounds at all familiar to you, it's because he's the same person who cracked the iPhone's security measures. In this case, Sony is upset that Hotz figured out Sony's secret codes, including a number used to digitally sign all PS3 games and software as genuine. With that key, any software can be signed as legit, including pirated games.
We're not surprised Courtney Love said/wrote something that earned her a lawsuit, we're just surprised this is the first time a celebrity's been sued over comments left on Twitter.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Love had been in a dispute with Dawn Simorangkir, a fashion designer seeking payment for clothes worth several thousand dollars. For whatever reason, Love decided to fire off a string of insults and personal attacks against Simorangkir on her Twitter account.
"She has received a VAST amount of money from me over 40,000 dollars and I do not make people famous and get raped TOO!," Love tweeted.
That was the least of Love's comments, according to the Hollywood Reporter, which says Love also accused the fashion designer of being a drug-pushing prostitute. The end result is the first high-profile defamation trial over Twitter comments.
"We don't believe there's any defamation, and even if there were defamatory statements, there was no damage," says James Janowitz, an attorney for Love.
The big question -- and potential precedent -- is whether or not users would legally interpret Love's Twitter posts as facts rather than opinion.
Like Leisure Suit Larry -- the version created by Al Lowe and not the bastardized remake that never would have flown at the Sierra of old -- daters signing up at Match.com may be looking for love in all the wrong places, but it isn't their fault, they say.
Former customers accuse the online dating service of misleading potential subscribers who pony up to find their soul mate only to run into a plethora of expired ads for fake accounts created by spammers, BizJournals.com reports. These scorned lovers have taken their complaint to court.
"Match takes virtually no action to remove these profiles," the plaintiffs complain. "With regard to the thousands of fake or fraudulent profiles, Match likewise makes little to no effort to vet, police, or remove these profiles and thereby permits, condones, and acquiesces their posting."
In legal speak, the allegations amount to breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and negligent misrepresentation. The basis for all this? The plaintiff's attorneys say they interviewed former Match.com employees who admitted that as many as 60 percent of profiles on the site are inactive or fake, and that they're instructed to only take them down following a specific request.