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Another twist in the twisted DigiMedia/Mission Abstract patent case

The long standing fracas over who does or doesn’t have legitimate patents over certain radio station automated programming systems took another turn this past week.

The DigiMedia (aka Mission Abstract Data) case is familiar to some radio broadcasters in Texas because of threatening letters they received from the firm demanding fees for use of their patented technology.

However, whether the patents are legitimate is very much in question.

An examiner in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has determined that he was not provided with prior art invalidating some claims of DigiMedia’s patents.  

As a result, some of DigiMedia’s claims have and will issue. 

The Court set a July 25 deadline for radio group owner defendants to file their comments on whether the Court should now lift its stay, thereby letting DigiMedia’s patent infringement case go forward. 

Dick Zaragoza of TAB FCC counsel Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman said that in spite of the PTO examiner’s ruling, the current defendants still have the right to challenge the DigiMedia patents in court, in front of a jury.  

The group owners have responded and it appears they too, wish a case to go forward. Read more about that development here.

TAB will continue to bring its membership new developments in the case. 

In the meantime, TAB urges our radio station members to rely upon the advice of experienced U.S. patent counsel, given that the matter is highly technical and any liability may turn on whether a station uses any of the particular systems that are subject of the patents.

Questions?  Contact TAB's Michael Schneider or call (512) 322-9944.

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