Tuesday, May 14, 2013

ITC Favors Nintendo And Global Distrubition

Nintendo just won a U.S. Appeals Court ruling that makes it just a bit more difficult for patent companies to seek import bans as a means of getting royalties. The case was originally filed by Motive LLC, claiming that Nintendo infringed on a patent for a system that would track a user’s position (sounds like the Wii motion sensor). Motiva originally filed the suit in Texas where we typically favor the patent company (because, you know, we care about businesses and less about people) in 2010. But Nintendo was able to get it bumped  up to the Federal Courts in Washington because of the scope and severity of the issue. At stake would have been millions of Wii systems, something on a global scale beyond the scope that a smaller court could handle.

What it boils down to is this: Motiva was founded with the idea of combining fitness with video games. Their company was unable to produce a product but provided a few patents. These were sold willingly by the company and Nintendo purchased them. Said patents were applied to the Wii, which went on to make a lot of money. Motiva felt they needed to receive some form of monetary compensation for the Wii selling so well.

With this ruling, it can help future companies benefit. The constraints of the patent companies won’t be as severe. Apple and Google have already made a ton of complaints about the push of these companies to constantly ask for reparations and back pay long after the patents are purchased and in the new company’s possession. Basically they want money if the product sells well, and nothing if the patent sits in dust. Yes it’s silly, but welcome to the real world. At least there won’t be an import ban on some Nintendo products as a result of this case.


And if you’re looking to kill a few minutes today, go to Google Images and search: “Atari Breakout.” You’ll be treated to a classic, and Goolfied, game of Breakout, which launched today.

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