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NTP Gets a Taste of Its Own Medicine 49

Posted by kdawson
from the trolling-for-dollars dept.
UltraAyla writes, "NTP's patent suits seem to have attracted the attention of Oren Tavory, a man who claims to have worked on a project with NTP founder Thomas Campana back in 1991. From the article: 'In September, Tavory filed a lawsuit against NTP in U.S. District Court in Richmond, VA, demanding that a judge issue a court order naming him as co-inventor on seven NTP patents, and accusing NTP of copyright infringement and unjust enrichment.'"
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NTP Gets a Taste of Its Own Medicine

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  • NTP (Score:1, Funny)

    by nacturation (646836)
    I take it NTP isn't an acronym for "No To Patents"?
     
  • by paladinwannabe2 (889776) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:44PM (#16787361)
    Ah, Lawsuits. Is there any problem you can't solve?
  • by MyNameIsEarl (917015) <assf2000@NOspAM.yahoo.com> on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:45PM (#16787369)
    Live by the patent, die by the patent. Or maybe it was swords. Nah I'm pretty sure it was patent.
  • by bunions (970377) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:45PM (#16787375)
    the fact that you can actually sue someone for "unjust enrichment" is sort of awesome.
  • by AltGrendel (175092) <ag-slashdot AT exit0 DOT us> on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:46PM (#16787379) Homepage
    Hope he has some documentation to back up that claim.
  • re: more acronym fun (Score:3, Informative)

    by cbiltcliffe (186293) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:54PM (#16787445) Homepage Journal
    the entire article doesn't mention once what NTP means. They hinted at it but I'm still not sure. I shouldn't even have to ask but what does NTP stand for?! And better yet, why does slashdot always post articles with acronyms without explaining what they mean once before turning them into an acronym? (a basic rule of english composition) Do they just assume everyone knows every tech acronym that exists?
    http://www.acronymfinder.com/ [acronymfinder.com] might come in handy. Although it doesn't cover company names, which this is. Maybe the company doesn't have a full name....just a few letters.
  • What NTP stands for (Score:5, Informative)

    by Thansal (999464) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:54PM (#16787447)
    #16787401 [slashdot.org]

    NTP, as far as I can tell, is simply "NTP, Inc" it is not an acronym like RIM (research In Motion).
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:54PM (#16787449)
    "the fact that you can actually sue someone for 'unjust enrichment' is sort of awesome."

    Well if you can invade a country for simply suspecting unjust enrichment, I'd think being able to sue for it is a given. *Ba-dum*ching*

    [Parent [slashdot.org]]
  • Let's all sue NTP. I read a sci-fi novel back in the day where messages were zipping around in space. I thought a lot about it. Surely that qualifies as early work on wireless email?
  • by mpapet (761907) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:54PM (#16787453) Homepage
    Patenting the shape of the corners of a gift card and the tsunami of other meaningless patents overwhelming the PTO will not bring about patent reform. Working the PTO, like most gov't jobs is something private industry doesn't want to do and is a relatively small portion of the Gov budget. Crying about the extra work and hiring 1 for every 100 requested reviewers is about the only way it's being addressed right now.

    Clogging the (I assume federal) courts with patent related litigation will. Why? Because the courts will be asking for many more judges, clerks, infrastructure, (money$$$) to address the tidal wave of litigation.

    Judges and their courts are much more expensive and much more respected than mere patent workers.

    The more litigation related to frivolous patents, the better.
  • by DittoBox (978894) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:55PM (#16787457) Homepage
    Ah, Lawsuits. Is there any problem you can't solve?

    Yes. The lawyers don't keel over and die when they're finished, like the should.

  • But this guy sounds like he should open his own holding company, if he wins this he can be the one that squanders the squanders... I actually wish him luck!
  • And better yet, why does slashdot always post articles with acronyms without explaining what they mean once before turning them into an acronym?

    For an explanation, I refer you to one of my prior posts [slashdot.org] which explains this quite adequately.
     
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I thought that leaving an inventor off the list of inventors (or including someone who was not an inventor) was sufficient to invalidate a patent. I am not a patent lawyer, but that what I remembered from an intro to patent law course that I took many many years ago.

    Can anyone comment who knows for sure?
  • NTP (Score:2, Funny)

    by maxrate (886773)
    I hate NTP (the company) because of the lawsuit against RIM. But to make matters worse for myself - my mind has since associated NTP the company with NTP the time protocol. Everytime I have to setup a NTP connection to a server I think of RIM. However when I think of RIM, I think of a RIM job. No, not a job a RIM. Yes this is off-topic - but I had to get this off my chest.
  • by rehabdoll (221029)
    Especially since most geeks know "NTP" as "network time protocol"
  • by Stanistani (808333) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @02:11PM (#16787611) Homepage Journal
    Skinner: Yes, but we're prepared for that. We've lined up a fabulous type of [lawyer] that thrives on [patent trolls].

    Lisa: But then we're stuck with [lawyers]!

    Skinner: No, that's the beautiful part. When wintertime rolls around, the [lawyers] simply freeze to death.
  • Think this was about Network Time Protocol?
  • clocks? (Score:3, Funny)

    by pe1chl (90186) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @02:27PM (#16787699)
    Does that mean we can no longer keep our clocks synchronized without paying royalties?
  • by acvh (120205)
    maybe now people will stop laughing at my suit against Pfizer over those little blue pills.
  • "An eye for an eye will leave the whole world blind." - Mohandas Ghandi

    NTP will sue others on its patents to pay those who sue NTP on its patents. And a rhumba line of lawyers will all collect the fees, ultimately from consumers.
  • by MillenneumMan (932804) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @02:40PM (#16787793)
    ...or at least that is the best that Stout can recall. From an article in Virginia Business Magazine http://www.virginiabusiness.com/magazine/yr2005/se p05/law.shtml [virginiabusiness.com] "...the inventor came up with the name. Stout does not even remember what it stands for, but thinks it was originally New Technology Products."
  • "There is always a bigger fish."
  • by Compulawyer (318018) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @02:44PM (#16787831)
    It does not invalidate the patent. It makes the patent unenforceable. The difference is that if the patent is invalid, it is dead forever. if the patent is unenforceable, you can potentially fix the problem that made it unenforceable and obtain a good patent.

    Inventorship is easy to fix but has potentially serious consequences. In the US, inventors are deemed to be owners of the patent unless or until those rights are assigned, usually to a company. An owner of a patent can profit from the patent without having to account to the other owners. In this case, for example, if this person succeeds in getting named as an inventor, and assuming that he is under no obligation through an employment or other contract to assign his rights to NTP, he can then potentially license the patents to Palm (who NTP is now suing), keep all the licensing proceeds, and effectively eliminate NTP's ability to collect anything from Palm.

  • time that NTP got what was coming to them.
  • by garcia (6573)
    NTP, as far as I can tell, is simply "NTP, Inc" it is not an acronym like RIM (research In Motion).

    Need Those Patents (to sue for). That's what it means.
  • "Need Those Patents"?

    "Need To Prosecute"? (Not sure if this term is right for a civil case)

    "Naughty Tech Parasites"?
  • OpenNTP (Score:3, Funny)

    by Gothmolly (148874) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @02:56PM (#16787905)
    Aren't most people running OpenNTP these days?
  • "Ah, Lawsuits. Is there any problem you can't solve?

            Yes. The lawyers don't keel over and die when they're finished, like the should."

    HEY! I am a lawyer.
  • by Ubergrendle (531719) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @03:25PM (#16788101) Journal
    ...was apparently for threaded message posting on an online web forum.
  • by springbox (853816)
    "No Two Patents" are not involved in litigation. Awww..
  • NTP = No Toilet Paper... That's why everything they do smells...
  • by dmatos (232892)

    I hate NTP (the company) because of the lawsuit against RIM. But to make matters worse for myself - my mind has since associated NTP the company with NTP the time protocol. Everytime I have to setup a NTP connection to a server I think of RIM. However when I think of RIM, I think of a RIM job. No, not a job a RIM. Yes this is off-topic - but I had to get this off my chest.

    If you need to get it off your chest, it's not a rim job. There's another name for that activity.

  • ... for RIM if they hadn't spent a decade using litigation to force everyone else out of the market. Personally, in these kinds of situations you have to go with Kissinger's comment on the Iran-Iraq war - "It's too bad they can't [all] lose."
  • Do you know what PCMCIA stands for? People Can't Memorize Computer Industry Acronyms :)
  • And a rhumba line of lawyers will all collect the fees, ultimately from consumers.

    But there is a chance for customers so that they do not have to foot the bill.

    IMO those lawsuits are "investment" for the companies: they are financing it in hopes to later obtain income thanks to it and that income will cover this "investment" and gives also some bonus. Also lawyers are (at least partialy) being paid after the case (more precisely: after the successfull case).

    So, at the end, if the customers does not buy t

    • by Doc Ruby (173196)
      Too late: the lawyers come out of the woodwork only after the public has not only bought $BILLIONS of these products, but is committed to their upgrade path.

      That's the entire point of submarine patents. And the reason they should be outlawed, before even the entire patent system gets its necessary overhaul.
  • Hmmm? C'mon, name me even just one instance. Can't do it, can ya?

    The proper functioning of Capitalism is dependent upon every participant being (equally) greedy. The theory is that since one gets screwed-over in transaction A - an inequal exchange of value - then one must in turn screw-over someone else in later transactions just in order to break even... but of course some people still manage to do better than breaking even. Sounds pretty ethical, don't it?

    This story is just an instance of Capitalism w

"Pull the wool over your own eyes!" -- J.R. "Bob" Dobbs

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