Monday, August 26, 2013

LinkedIn, Data Carriers Settle over Autocomplete Patent

Case Filed: Jul 19, 2012

Case Closed: Aug 21, 2013

Court: Delaware District Court

Judge: Leonard P. Stark

Case Summary:
Data Carriers, a non-practicing company that holds numbers of technology patents, filed patent infringement suit against LinkedIn. It also filed suits against websites and companies including Netflix, Hulu, Office Depot, Flixster, Apple, Sony, Toshiba, HP, Lenovo and a few others. The suit revolves around a single patent US5388198 entitled ‘Proactive presentation of automating features to a computer user’ issued on Feb 07, 1995 and expired[i] on Apr 16, 2012. The patent was originally issued to Symantec and was last assigned[ii] to Data Carriers (source: MaxVal’s Assignment Database).

The suit alleged that the defendant infringed the patent by making use of products or services that automatically intervene in the use of a computer system to suggest or present features based on information on the use of the system, including in autocomplete features of the defendant’s website  By using the claimed technology on its website, Data Carrier alleged it had suffered damages and was therefore entitled to receive a judgment for "damages, costs, expenses, and prejudgment and post-judgment interest", as well as attorneys’ fees, as said in the complaint. 

The parties have settled the case and reached an agreement. Upon their requests for dismissal, the Court ordered Dismissal with Prejudice of all claims by Plaintiff Data Carriers, subject to the terms of a Settlement and Release Agreement. Further details of the settlement were not disclosed. Similarly suits against Netflix, Hulu, Office Depot, Flixster were closed on the same day.

See 1:12-cv-00939 for more details. To get alerts on cases filed/closed, subscribe to our Litigation Alerts.

Are you looking for a tool to calculate patent terms? Try Patent Term Estimator, our free tool or download our free Android app on Google Play Store.

[i] Expected expiration date. Patent Term Estimator is a free web-based tool that automatically calculates patent terms and expiration dates for U.S. utility patents.
[ii] MaxVal offers Patent Assignment Alert service where subscribers receive email alerts when assignments relating to target applications, patents or entities of interest are recorded.

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