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Sony sued over Blu-ray this time

Ever since Sony managed to squeeze out of a lawsuit over their rumble technology with Immersion (by squeeze we mean settle with Immersion for lots of cash money), we thought the long string of lawsuits was over. But in typical American fashion, if you're hurting for money, you might as well say you created a technology a big company is using and sue them.

Enter California-based Target Technology, suing Sony for the thin alloy film coating their Blu-ray discs. Claiming a 2006 patent entitled "Metal alloys for the reflective or the semi-reflective layer of an optical storage medium" as their legitimacy to damages, Target Tech is taking Sony to court. We've got to ask, seriously? That seems to be a fairly standard piece of technology. We know patents and other forms of intellectual property have a crazy set of rules and laws, especially when placed in international scope, but all this is going to accomplish is slowing Sony down. Sony, just pay these guys and keep on moving! Or destroy them in court, somehow!

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Reader Comments

(Page 1)

1. give target you know the store a 20% discount on ps3s .. and the legal team to sue target tech over trademark infringement .. done.

Posted at 3:01PM on May 25th 2007 by WhackMushroom

2. Umm..... last time I checked there isn't a single company that is "in charge" or "responsible" for Blu-Ray. It was a collaboration by many companies.

I call BS on this one and expect it to either fail or get thrown out because they are pointing the finger at the wrong person. The fact that they have singled out one company is all the proof I need to know that this is just some whiny company trying to get some money.

Hey Target Technology: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blu-ray

Posted at 3:20PM on May 25th 2007 by OrganicShadow

3. Hey Target Technology: http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/tac/tmlaw2.html

Posted at 3:29PM on May 25th 2007 by WhackMushroom

4. Interestingly enough, it was the protective coating on Blu Ray discs that kept them from getting on the market for so long. Early prototype discs were stored in plastic cases much like MiniDiscs were because the things were so prone to damage.

Still it doesn't make sense to point the finger at Sony, although they'll probably toss these guys some cash and be on their way.

Posted at 3:32PM on May 25th 2007 by Nik

5. Screw justice and intellectual properties! Sony is entitled to be sued over extremely vague patents, because they're just a big faceless evil captialist corporation and we hate them this generation!

Jeez the commenters here are stupid.

Posted at 3:37PM on May 25th 2007 by Deadalus

6. Understand something; the patent title is vague but the patent is specific. Target Tech owns a particular silver alloy and its application for optical discs. Commonly, gold or aluminum are used, not silver, so their patent is not simply a blanket statement. Likewise, Target Tech is selling and has been selling this technology for 6 years, meaning that they did not simply poach a patent for the sake of future lawsuits but are in fact pursuing business opportunities with said technology.

I'm not going to predict whether or not this lawsuit will fly or make a statement on whether or not it should, but lets all be clear about what is going on. If, as TT alleges, Sony is in fact using their particular alloy for this particular application, then they are in patent violation. If not, well then they are not.

Posted at 5:07PM on May 25th 2007 by Warmwaterpenguin

7. "Likewise, Target Tech is selling and has been selling this technology for 6 years, meaning that they did not simply poach a patent for the sake of future lawsuits but are in fact pursuing business opportunities with said technology."

Actually I read earlier that they applied for the patent in 2004 and it was granted in 2006. How can they sell the tech for 6 years with no patent? Weird.

Posted at 5:29PM on May 25th 2007 by Popfrogs

8. @ popfrog

"Actually I read earlier that they applied for the patent in 2004 and it was granted in 2006. How can they sell the tech for 6 years with no patent? Weird."

Ummmm, Are you serious? A patent isn't something you need to sell something. It's to protect the product from being used without permission or copied. You can sell anything without a patent, you just have to watch your ass, because people will copy the product, but whoever gets the patent first, gets the rights.

Posted at 7:30PM on May 25th 2007 by Killer

9. @Killer: Yes, I'm not retarded. I know you can sell something unpatented, but it's a very stupid way to do business, particularly if you think you have a unique or original product. If you're selling Turtle Wax, you don't care, it has been patented. Same goes for bread and cookies, unless you have a unique process.

Just another company looking for a damn payday. Nothing new here.

Posted at 10:06PM on May 25th 2007 by Popfrogs

10. I patented chewing bubble gum with anything but your mouth. Does that mean I can sue you for chewing bubble gum with your toes?

Posted at 11:22PM on May 25th 2007 by massive_98

11. I am going to sue Sony...for all the time wasted reading stories about them being sued...I smell another lawsuit.

Posted at 3:00AM on May 26th 2007 by Michael

12. There are an awful lot of other companies (TDK, all the HD-DVD manufacturers, etc.) that have their own methods for coating optical media with a protective layer too. I haven't seen Target's patent, but it looks like they'll be suing lots of people for the next 20 years over this, or scare them into licensing their tech.

Posted at 10:14PM on May 26th 2007 by Brandson

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