Paul Allen Still Determined to Sue the Internet

Microsoft co-founder and 400-foot yacht-owner Paul Allen is determined to sue the pants off the internet. Well, maybe not the entire internet, per se, but rather a bevy of the biggest companies around that use it.

Allen's lawsuit was originally filed in August, after his platoon of lawyers poured over his patents and came up with a way to argue that he practically invented the internet in his Interval Licensing lab in Palo Alto that's been closed now for 10 years.

Now, as multiple news outlets report, Allen's dodged a minor setback and has refiled his lawsuit.

The companies named in the suit are Apple, Google, Facebook, AOL, eBay, Netflix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, Staples, Yahoo and YouTube. The suit most viciously goes after Google's Android mobile phone technology.

Of course Microsoft and MSN are spared Allen's wrath.

The case is hugely important to companies that use existing internet technologies to create new products--basically every tech company in existence. And it ironically comes while Allen's brainchild, Microsoft, is wrapped in its own patent battle with a company that's successfully sued them for patent violations.

That lawsuit was dismissed earlier in the month by a Seattle judge who told Allen he'd need to be more specific in terms of how exactly these companies were infringing on his patents.

Now he's amended his suit and the show will go on.

Those interested in wading into the bizarre world of patent law should read Florian Mueller's post on FOSS Patent Blog here for a thorough digestion of the lawsuit.

Suffice to say, Allen seems to have a shot with this one.

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