Posted Thu, Nov 18, 2010 by Martuk
Runescape developer Jagex Games Studio has secured a win for the gaming industry against the alleged patent infringement claim by PalTalk Holdings Inc. Last Year PalTalk filed suits against several major game developers including Turbine, Sony, Microsoft, Activision Blizzard, NCsoft and Jagex alleging patent infringement against using technology that allows data sharing between many computers, which PalTalk claimed to have the rights to and that the virtual worlds created by those companies infringed on its patent.
Microsoft settled out of court, but Jagex pursued the matter. In a press release made earlier today, Jagex announced that it had been victorious in securing a non-infringement judgment in its case. But it was a costly victory to earn.
“It is exceedingly unfortunate that the US legal system can force a company with a sole presence in Cambridge, UK to incur a seven digit expense and waste over a year of management time on a case with absolutely no merit” said Mark Gerhard, Jagex CEO. “This anomaly, which could easily break smaller studios, doesn’t happen in the UK since you can pursue frivolous litigants for the costs of such claims. We are particularly disappointed that PalTalk did not, at any stage prior to filing the lawsuit, seek to contact us to clarify that Jagex’s game platform did not infringe PalTalk’s patents”.
Microsoft likely settled a case it could have possibly won given today's announcement, but they likely chose to settle in order to avoid a drawn out and expensive legal battle. Check out the full press release for more details.