|Mark Small, CEO|
Lodsys, LLC is a patent trolling company located in Marshall, Texas that brings patent infringement lawsuits against a variety of companies in the US. Numerous app development enterprises have accused them of "patent trolling", referring to the fact that they have sued many developers over their usage of Lodsys' patents. On May 13, 2011, it was reported that they had demanded that a number of iOS application developers obtain licenses from them. Apple has written to Lodsys stating that Apple's licenses protect its app developers. However, Lodsys has decided to press on with their lawsuit and has sent a detailed legal response to Apple. According to the company website, Lodsys states that it is not a corporate subsidiary of patent holding company Intellectual Ventures, contrary to speculation from media sources.
Lodsys owns four patents, all of which list Daniel H. Abelow as the inventor. The patents are related to interacting with customers over the internet in relationship to products and services. This includes things like online help, customer support, tutorials, on-line upgrades, surveys, etc. The patents are:
- U.S. Patent 5,999,908 (The "908" patent) "Customer-based product design module"
- U.S. Patent 7,133,834 (The "834" patent) "Product Value Information Interchange Server"
- U.S. Patent 7,222,078 (The "078" patent) "Methods and Systems for Gathering Information from Units of a Commodity Across a Network"
- U.S. Patent 7,620,565 (The "565" patent) "Customer-based product design module"
In February, 2011 Lodsys sued several companies, including Canon, Hewlett Packard, Lexmark, Novell and Motorola claiming that the companies had violated exclusive rights covered by one or more Lodsys patents. Patents referenced in the suit were the "565" patent, the "078" patent, and the "908" patent.
On May 31, 2011, Lodsys asserted two of its four patents, the "565" patent and the "078" patent against:
- Illusion Labs
- Richard Shinderman of Brooklyn, New York
- Wulven Game Studios of Hanoi, Vietnam
On June 7, 2011 Foresee Results filed for declaratory judgment against Lodsys in northern Illinois, related to Lodsys claims against Adidas, Best Buy and WE Energies. Foresee is represented by McDermott Will & Emery. The claim by Foresee alleges that several Lodsys patents are invalid. The venue of Northern Illinois was chosen because Foresee asserts that Lodsys actually is doing business there rather than their published Texas location. "..this Court has personal jurisdiction over Lodsys because Lodsys' chief executive officer and sole employee resides in, and conducts business from, this judicial district." Michael Shanahan of McDermott says that the patents at issue (the same as the iPhone lawsuits) are actually invalid. Foresee Results published a press release on November 23, 2011 stating that they had reached a settlement with Lodsys that resolves all outstanding litigation claims between ForeSee and Lodsys and terminates all pending litigation with Lodsys related to ForeSee's products and services, including all such claims against ForeSee's customers.
Starting in June 2011, a number of adult businesses have received patent infringement notices from Lodsys over the "078" patent, citing the businesses' use of interactive online advertisements, subscription models, and data collection violating Lodsys' patents.
On January 5, 2012 Bold Software, a live support software provider, settled with Lodsys to resolve infringement claims between Lodsys and Bold Software’s past, present and future customers for the use of Bold Software products.
On June 4, 2012, Oracle sued Lodsys in an attempt to appease some of its customers that Lodsys had prosecuted.
On January 29, 2013 Lodsys sued General Motors, Oriental Trading Company, Crocs, Somerset Investments and Saks over the "565" and "078" patents.
On February 28, 2013 Lodsys sued Steris, PromoManagers, Lowes Hotels, Optics Planet, SuperValu, Volkswagen of America, Retail Concepts, 4imprint, and BullionVault citing the businesses use of interactive chat software and the "565" and "078" patents.
On September 30, 2013 Lodsys dropped its patent lawsuit against Kaspersky Lab after their refusal to settle. This was the result of Lodsys suing Kaspersky Lab and 54 other companies in May 2012. Out of the 55 companies only Kaspersky Lab managed to have the lawsuit "dismissed with prejudice" while others settled the case with Lodsys to avoid a costly trial.
- "List of Patent Cases Brought By Lodsys". Docket Alarm, Inc. Retrieved 22 August 2013.
- Arthur, Charles (May 13, 2011). "Apple iPhone app developers hit by patent claims". The Guardian. Retrieved 2011-05-15.
- Cosoy, Natalio (2011-08-26). "Patent war hits small app developers". BBC News. Retrieved 2011-08-29.
- Rosoff, Matt (May 23, 2011), "Apple To Patent Troll: Leave Our Developers Alone!", San Francisco Chronicle, retrieved 2011-05-24 Article originally from Business Insider.
- Eric Slivka, "Lodysys Responds to Apple: Files Lawsuits Against App Developers", MacRumors blog, March 31, 2011
- "Our Patents" on Lodsys web site
- Newman, Jared (May 13, 2011), "Trolled: iOS Developers Threatened With Patent Lawsuits", PC World, retrieved 2011-05-15
- Florian Meuller, “Lodsys sues 7 app developers in Eastern Texas, disagrees with Apple; Android also targeted”, FOSS Patents blog, May 31, 2011
- Case filing pdf
- Gamet, Jeff, Lodsys Hit with Patent Invalidation Suit, The Mac Observer, retrieved 2011-06-08
- All four Lodsys patents under invalidation attack in federal court FOSS Patents blog
- Is McDermott Will app developers' (accidental) white knight?
- Pardon, Rhett (June 6, 2011), Lodsys Sending Out Patent Infringement Notices, XBIZ, retrieved 2011-08-04