TYLER, Texas — A Texas patent holding company has filed seven new lawsuits — including three against the top adult entertainment companies — over image-hosting technology.
LFP Internet Group, Vivid Entertainment Group and Playboy are among the adult companies hit with patent infringement claims over U.S. Patent No. 6,006,231.
Tejas Research, which does business in Tyler, Texas, also is suing Walgreens, Neiman Marcus, Getty Images Inc. and Academy Sports Outdoors over the same patent.
Tejas Research's image-hosting invention includes a method of downloading a plurality of levels of an image stored in a differential hierarchical format, according to the Patent Office.
The "231" invention specifically is "a system for retrieving an image from a network comprises: (1) a server application; (2) a plurality of image files, each storing an image in a plurality of different versions, and connected to the server application; (3) a client application which enables a user to select and retrieve a desired version of a desired image; and (4) a communication application providing a communication link between the client and server applications wherein, in use, the user can select a desired image and a desired version of that desired image for retrieval and display.
"The versions of the image are stored such that when a low resolution version of the image has been obtained, a high resolution version can be obtained simply by downloading the difference between the two versions of the image."
In each of the seven cases filed at U.S. District Court in Tyler, Texas, Tejas Research is asking the court to issue an injunction to prevent further infringement and for an award of damages and attorneys fees, among other demands.
Attorney Hao Ni of Ni Law, who represents Tejas Research, declined comment to XBIZ on the pending litigation — the first suits the patent troll has waged. Michael Klein, president of LFP, whose company is one of the defendants named in the suit, also declined comment to XBIZ on the suit.