Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 11th Feb 2011 16:00 UTC, submitted by aa
Multimedia, AV Well, well, well. The MPEG-LA is showing its true colours. After a decade of threatening to patent troll the living heck out of Theora, the company led by a patent troll has now finally put its money where its mouth is. Well, sort of. They don't actually have any patents yet, they're asking people to submit patents they believe are essential to the VP8 specification. Update: MPEG (so not the MPEG-LA) has announced its intent to develop a new video compression standard for the web which will be royalty-free. "The new standard is intended to achieve substantially better compression performance than that offered by MPEG-2 and possibly comparable to that offered by the AVC Baseline Profile. MPEG will issue a call for proposals on video compression technology at the end of its upcoming meeting in March 2011 that is expected to lead to a standard falling under ISO/IEC 'Type-1 licensing', i.e. intended to be 'royalty free'."
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RE: Comment by smitty
by vodoomoth on Sat 12th Feb 2011 12:37 UTC in reply to "Comment by smitty"
vodoomoth
Member since:
2010-03-30

So this basically means that they don't currently have any patents, right? They're basically asking everyone out there to see if anyone else does.

Yes. Which makes me wonder how this will play out in a court of law before the judge (and jury if applicable in this kind of cases). I know that if I were a member of that jury, knowing of this "call for patents in order to sue" would be enough for me to disregard the complaints even if they would have otherwise been perfectly legitimate. But I also know the judiciary system doesn't allow that kind of superficial assessment or reaction from a juror... does it?

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by smitty
by lemur2 on Sat 12th Feb 2011 13:59 in reply to "RE: Comment by smitty"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"So this basically means that they don't currently have any patents, right? They're basically asking everyone out there to see if anyone else does.

Yes. Which makes me wonder how this will play out in a court of law before the judge (and jury if applicable in this kind of cases). I know that if I were a member of that jury, knowing of this "call for patents in order to sue" would be enough for me to disregard the complaints even if they would have otherwise been perfectly legitimate. But I also know the judiciary system doesn't allow that kind of superficial assessment or reaction from a juror... does it?
"

I think that there is a law that applies almost perfectly to what MPEG LA seem to be trying to do here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tortious_interference

Google does have a number of perfectly legal business relationships with this set of companies and organisations:
http://www.webmproject.org/about/supporters/

Google's relationship with those companies is based on the WebM technology being offered perpetually to everyone worldwide, no charge, irrevocably and royalty free.

It seems to be a slam dunk case that MPEG LA are trying to interfere with those relationships.

Reply Parent Score: 2