Lodsys, Facing 4 Declaratory Suits, Sues 10 Companies

Rhett Pardon

CHICAGO — More mainstream companies have filed against Lodsys with declaratory suits seeking to invalidate its patent claims, accusing the patent holding company of unfair competition and tortious interference.

The New York Times Co. and market research firm OpinionLab filed lawsuits Monday against Lodsys at U.S. District Court in Chicago. Last week, another market research company, Foresee Results Inc., filed a similar suit, as well as ESET, an antivirus software maker.

Lodsys, which recently sent out scores of infringement notices to online adult companies, now is being put on the butt end of the litigation stick over its claims with the four declaratory suits.

But it also has followed on its promise to companies that may have infringed on U.S. Patent No. 7,222,078, which includes "methods and systems for gathering information from units of a commodity across a network."

On Friday, Lodsys filed suit against 10 companies over alleged infringement over U.S. Patent No. 7,222,078, as well as U.S. Patent No. 5,999,908.

Among the defendants, according to the suit filed at U.S. District Court in Marshall, Texas, are: Adidas, BBT Solutions, Best Western, CVS, Sam's West, Stanley Black & Decker, The Container Store, The Teaching Company, Vitamin Shoppe and Vegas.com.

Lodsys CEO Mark Small told XBIZ last week that he couldn't comment on legal maneuvers but would let court filings do the talking for the company.

"We made a decision not to do press and apply our resources to licensing discussions, and we want to be consistent/fair in our policy," Small said.

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