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Fri Dec 23 2005 11:09:46

eBay Patent Wars

By: Ina Steiner

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MercExchange said it reached an agreement with the USPTO (patent office) regarding its 051 auction patent (link). MercExchange indicates a similar agreement is forthcoming for the 265 Buy It Now patent. 

As with all new developments in the ongoing patent war, expect both sides to claim this as a victory for their side. eBay offices are closed today and Monday, so I'm not sure whether they will issue a response before Tuesday...

From what I remember, after the jury verdict and eBay filed for a patent reexam, some experts said any modifications by the USPTO to the 265 patent could invalidate the judgement (now at $25 million). Even if USPTO actions affect monetary award, whether or not it could or would affect an injunction is a mystery to me. I expect we'll see experts weighing in today in news reports, though it may be tough for reporters to track experts down right before the holiday weekend. Have a happy and safe one!

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