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Adam Carolla Joins Fight Against Podcast Patent Troll

timothy posted about 6 months ago | from the save-penn's-sunday-school dept.

Electronic Frontier Foundation 126

First time accepted submitter tor528 (896250) writes "Patent troll Personal Audio has sued top podcasters including Adam Carolla and HowStuffWorks, claiming that they own the patent for delivery of episodic content over the Internet. Adam Carolla is fighting back and has started a Fund Anything campaign to cover legal fees. From the Fund Anything campaign page: 'If Adam Carolla loses this battle, then every other Podcast will be quickly shut down. Why? Because Patent Trolls like Personal Audio would use a victory over Carolla as leverage to extort money from every other Podcast.. As you probably know, Podcasts are inherently small, owner-operated businesses that do not have the financial resources to fight off this type of an assault. Therefore, Podcasts as we know them today would cease to exist.' James Logan of Personal Audio answered Slashdotters' questions in June 2013. Links to the patent in question can be found on Personal Audio's website. The EFF filed a challenge against Personal Audio's podcasting patent in October 2013."

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Headline misleading (5, Informative)

Dins (2538550) | about 6 months ago | (#46572935)

I wouldn't say he "joined the fight" against patent trolls. He was sued by one and decided to very loudly and publicly fight it - in part so other podcasts aren't put out of buisness. Hence the Fund Anything campaign etc. I listen to his show often, and it's a constant topic.

More power to him!

Re:Nothing Misleading About DINGLEBERRIES! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573063)

So a little while ago I felt like I had a great big healthy shit coming on. I mean it makes sense. I have been adding more fiber to my diet lately. So I sat on my white porcelain throne and then ... *unghhnhhghhghh* *PLOP* Ah. Wow that was a big one. Damn it this is a big, wide, long log. It'll probably fold in half and get stuck and clog the fucking toilet. Again. Ah well. I will deal with that if and when it happens.

It was such a wide turd-log with such girth though. Amazing that my otherwise virgin asshole can expand that wide. Hmm that could be a problem. So I start to wipe. Damn it this could take a while. I got feces smeared on the sides of my ass cheeks from the girth of that turd. I wipe some more and ... oh no. I feel something knotty. Yup, what I feared from this turd has come to pass. I have lots of hairs around my asshole. I suppose most men do. Nature's way of saying "I love you! But not that much."

There it is. I can feel it through the single ply paper. A great big DINGLEBERRY. Naturally I try to awkwardly grab it with a folded sheet of toilet paper and dislodge it. I pull. Ouch. I pull harder. OUCH. Wow during its brief passage past the asshair, this turd-let really securely managed to get caught on some ass hairs. I can't just pull the dingleberry out without ripping the hairs right out. I have no idea if that caries the possibility of breaking the fecal encrusted skin and leading to an infection or what, but I know it would hurt so I want other options. I try gathering lots of sheets of toilet paper. I repeatedly wipe the same area over and over, hoping to wear this fucker down. I manage to whittle it down a little but this is taking far too much time. This turd is really determined to stay in its new home!

I can't very well pull my underpants back up now, that would get them all shitty and smelly. If I wanted to smell bad all the time I would let myself get fat. Maybe some water will help. I awkwardly reach for the faucet, turning it to a slow stream, and wet some toilet paper, making a mental note to disinfect the faucet handle later. I can't see the damned thing but judging from the brown stains appearing on the sheets of toilet paper, I am at least making progress. Now my hands are wet and shitty smelling and I am thinking this better be worth it. I use a dry sheet to feel for the dingleberry again. It did shrink but it's still there, dangling from my ass hairs, mocking me. WTF have I been eating lately to produce such a persistent turd? Nature does abhor a vacuum, which is why lots of gas has entered my bowels where the big turd-log recently was. I enjoy a nice after-defecating loud fart while I wonder what to do next. I chuckle because when the fart is your own, you don't think it stinks but you know somebody else would evacuate the area. Ok time to stop laughing, this is a serious predicament.

I toy with the idea of getting some scissors or something to try and cut the dingleberry out. Then I consider this is a sensitive area, I cannot see what I am doing, and it's too close for comfort to my cock and balls to be wielding a bladed item. I am starting to get angry. I am starting to not care anymore about the consequences of just yanking the damned thing out. I tried the easier ways and they failed. Fuck it, I have places to be and things to do. I can't very well spend all day in the bathroom playing a not-so-fun game with a turd. I double up on toilet paper and get a good secure grip on the dingleberry. Okay fucker, you're going DOWN. *YANK* Yeouch, fuck that hurt as much as I thought it would. And there it is, in my hand, nestled in the folds of toilet paper: my dingleberry! Ha ha ha, you won the battle, dingleberry, but I just won the war! I rub my sore ass cheek. Then I ceremoniously plop that fucker in the toilet bowl, to briefly swim with his big brother log. Oh man, you never heard such a satisfying flushing sound in your life. I rub some aftershave around my ass hairs just to make sure, better to smell funny than to get some kind of infected pimples or something.

I was careful. But not careful enough. Never careful enough. It was no trivial task to scrub the fecal matter completely off my hands and especialy, from under my fingernails. I find it useful to use a bar of soap and dig my nails in it. Repeatedly. I think all the turd particles are gone now. If I eat with my hands and get sick later I will at least know why, but it hopefully will be okay. Man. What an ordeal. Anyone who ever fought against a dingleberry knows how persistently they can cling to life next to your asshole.

Re:Headline misleading (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573077)

I'd love to be his girlfriend and eat spaghetti off his hairy chest with no parmesan. OK maybe a little.

Re:Headline misleading (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573107)

I'd love to be his girlfriend and eat spaghetti off his hairy chest with no parmesan. OK maybe a little.

I find that the yellowish gooey discharge from a yeast-infected vagina is an excellent parmesan substitute. Sure, the texture is very different but the taste is more similar than you might think.

Re:Headline misleading (4, Interesting)

SQLGuru (980662) | about 6 months ago | (#46573113)

I offer as a solution not covered by the patent the following. This solution is released free of charge to any and all podcasters / podcasting software / podcast playback devices:

Create a REST based url which requires a random number to be passed as the final argument. Without this random (non-predetermined) argument, the compilation file (aka RSS or ATOM feed) will not be returned.

From the patent statement linked in the summary: The compilation file was stored at a predetermined URL known to the Personal Audio player and was updated as new episodes became available

Re:Headline misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573901)

Not a lawyer, are ya?

Re:Headline misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574307)

Thank you for advertising our new patent! We here at Take Your Money Corp realize that this was intended in good will but we must now sue you for disclosing proprietary information for a large sum.

TYMCO! Destroying the future today!

Re:Headline misleading (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573479)

Adam Carolla is being targeted simply because he leans conservative and has been a vocal critic of Barack Obama. This is nothing more than the Left trying to silence a right-of-center voice by any means necessary.

Re:Headline misleading (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575205)

And look how even such a simple, inoffensive, not to mention completely correct comment here on a silly blog, gets immediately down modded.

Why in the world would an editor downmod this? The comment is on topic, polite and accurate. The *only* reason to downmod would seem to be that the editor is a socialist and disagrees with Corrola. Is this right? I can't think of any other reason.

Editor; you are a coward.

How do you feel knowing that you are nothing but a worthless propagandist, a foolish tool of the state interested only in power over other men. That is to say power over other men but not for yourself as you are nothing but a useful idiot, no, you only exist to support the elites and to help them in their quest for power.

I can think of little else that is as cowardly as this. You are truly a detestable one.

How does that feel then, little man?

Re:Headline misleading (1)

Pascoea (968200) | about 6 months ago | (#46575795)

And look how even such a simple, inoffensive, not to mention completely correct comment here on a silly blog, gets immediately down modded.

I think where he lost everybody is right around the part where the giant fucking [citation needed] tag at the end of the sentence should be. Who exactly is "The Left" that is targeting him? Oh yeah, it's a corporate patent troll. Who, I wouldn't be going too far out on a limb to assume, likely falls on "The Right" side of your magical line.

Re:Headline misleading (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46576079)

"Oh yeah, it's a corporate patent troll. Who, I wouldn't be going too far out on a limb to assume, likely falls on "The Right" side of your magical line."

It's a commonly held belief among the left about this whole corporation + Republicans = conservative thing

Republicans are not the same thing as conservative. Republicans are bascially worthless shitbags, they are just a bit less worthless than Democrats.

And the corporations are happy to give their money to whomever is in power in government, this, as you well know, is *not* the conservatives. It's for the most mart Democrats, and some Republicans. So yes, your evil hateful rich corporations are in bed with your statist Democrats (ever look up Obama's campaign contributers?) and the shitbag Republicans and they both would rather not have to listen to Corrola.

And you fools walk around going "Obama Obama Obama save us from the mean nasty evil rich Republicans".

It would be funny if it wasn't true.

Re:Headline misleading (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 months ago | (#46573583)

He is a millionaire that didn't give a shit about anyone else until it affected him personally.

Re:Headline misleading (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574005)

that's actually the crux of his podcast...all he does is complain of first world problems

Re:Headline misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574253)

He is a millionaire that didn't give a shit about anyone else until it affected him personally.

and how many things do you give a shit about that doesn't affect you personally?

Re:Headline misleading (1)

Tharkkun (2605613) | about 6 months ago | (#46576215)

He is a millionaire that didn't give a shit about anyone else until it affected him personally.

You obviously never watched Love Line!

Re:Headline misleading (2)

Peter Simpson (112887) | about 6 months ago | (#46575419)

I wouldn't say he "joined the fight" against patent trolls. He was sued by one and decided to very loudly and publicly fight it

More power to him!

If the troll holds true to form, they will dismiss the suit when it becomes clear it's going to court.

And he's bringing Steve-O with him! (2, Funny)

NotDrWho (3543773) | about 6 months ago | (#46572945)

Watch out patent trolls, your tables WILL be smashed!!

Re:And he's bringing Steve-O with him! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46572963)

And their nurples WILL be purpled!!

Isnt there prior art? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46572955)

ie. radio?

Re:Isnt there prior art? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573021)

Or stories told over several evenings at the campfire...

Re:Isnt there prior art? (5, Insightful)

nospam007 (722110) | about 6 months ago | (#46573037)

"ie. radio?"

Newsletters (the twitter of the nineties)
I got emailed 'periodic content' daily, weekly, monthly, over the 'internet', you could subscribe an unsubscribe via email too.
Some of them run to this very day.

Re:Isnt there prior art? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573143)

The patent covers not the podcasts themselves, but rather podcast notification via RSS (and it has to include file data, not just a newsflash along the lines of "new episode available on the website!").

Re:Isnt there prior art? (1)

wirefall (309232) | about 6 months ago | (#46573217)

No, you don't get it...but this is "on the Internet". That's why I'm patenting all the obvious methods, but adding "on the moon". I'm going to retire in style!

Re:Isnt there prior art? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 months ago | (#46573613)

Don't confuse the idea with the application.
Should the person who invented automatic door opening not get a patent because people already knew how to open a door?

I ma not defending the patent troll, but you reasoning is seriously flawed, and shows an almost complete ignorance of the patent system.

Re:Isnt there prior art? (2)

wirefall (309232) | about 6 months ago | (#46573817)

And your inability to read a tongue-in-cheek comment as such highlights your ignorance of humor...

Re:Isnt there prior art? (1)

sjames (1099) | about 6 months ago | (#46575499)

This is more akin to "should there be separate patents for each liquid one might pour into a juice glass?".

Re:Isnt there prior art? (1)

Sir Foxx (755504) | about 6 months ago | (#46573769)

I just imagine the ceo of Personal Audio trying to explain to the judge what you just said, like this guy in office space try's explain why he should keep his job. https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

Re: Isnt there prior art? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575771)

And Jennifer Aniston always plays... Jennifer Aniston. The trick is to wait long enough to forget she already played that character to watch the next movie.

Re:Isnt there prior art? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573673)

Not any implementation of public radio I'm familair with; no.

The patent covers downloading data about available programs, comparng it with previous programs, and downloading new programs (so, a podcast).

Personal Audio (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46572965)

Give them a hand!

550 Fannin Street
Suite 1313
Beaumont, Texas 77701

E-mail: info@personalaudio.net

Phone: (409) 768-0009

Re:Personal Audio (2)

ArhcAngel (247594) | about 6 months ago | (#46572995)

What's this? Beaumont has stolen Fannin Street from Houston? The nerve! I might have to stop and give them a piece of my mind the next time I take a trip to Coushatta [coushattac...resort.com]

Re:Personal Audio (1)

FatAlb3rt (533682) | about 6 months ago | (#46573939)

I vote for public shaming. Who are the shareholders?

Re:Personal Audio (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about 6 months ago | (#46574717)

I vote for public shaming. Who are the shareholders?

This is not effective with Patent Trolls. The only thing they understand is a legal smack-down.

Re:Personal Audio (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | about 6 months ago | (#46574983)

They couldn't care less about a legal smack-down as long as they're afloat. The only thing they understand is money. It will stop only with bankruptcy.

Re:Personal Audio (2)

parliboy (233658) | about 6 months ago | (#46574637)

I, for one, am shocked to discover that this is an East Texas address.

Re:Personal Audio (2)

Khashishi (775369) | about 6 months ago | (#46575409)

If this was the address of an abortion doctor or an animal researcher, this free speech would be deemed terrorism.

Whas 1000 patent lawyers at the bottom of the sea? (5, Funny)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 6 months ago | (#46572993)

I remember a quaint world where the lowest of the bottom-feeders were merely chasing ambulances.

Re:Whas 1000 patent lawyers at the bottom of the s (3, Funny)

MrLizard (95131) | about 6 months ago | (#46573793)

Patent: A methodology for increasing revenue for attorneys via rapid foot-based pursuit of emergency medical vehicles.

slight exaggeration (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46572997)

"If Adam Carolla loses this battle, then every other Podcast will be quickly shut down."

lol no

'If Adam Carolla loses this battle, then every other Podcast in America will be quickly shut down."

lol yes

Re:slight exaggeration (3, Interesting)

Grond (15515) | about 6 months ago | (#46573243)

It's even more exaggerated than that. So-called patent trolls are not generally interested in shutting down infringers (unless they have an exclusive license with someone else, which I don't think Personal Audio does). They want infringers to stay in business so they can get paid licensing fees. Since they want to maximize their revenue, they don't even want the license to be so burdensome that infringers simply close up shop rather than pay. What's more, the normal standard for patent damages is a reasonable royalty, so in most cases the patentee can't even ask for (much less receive) enough damages to shut down infringers.

Re:slight exaggeration (4, Funny)

MrLizard (95131) | about 6 months ago | (#46573831)

So-called "protection rackets" are not generally interested in shutting down business (unless they interfere with businesses owned by friends of the Godfather). They want "clients" to stay in business so that they can get paid protection money. Since they want to maximize their revenue, they don't even want to kill the shopkeepers if they don't pay up, just break some bones and maybe smash a few windows. What's more, the normal standard for failing to pay protection is a reasonable "both kneecaps for a first offense", so in most cases the protectors can't inflict enough damages to shut down the deadbeat's life functions.

Funny? (1)

Captain_Chaos (103843) | about 6 months ago | (#46575253)

I'm not sure why this is modded Funny. It's exactly what's going on here! Patent trolling is a protection racket; it's extortion pure and simple.

Re:slight exaggeration (1)

gsslay (807818) | about 6 months ago | (#46574291)

Why, you almost make it seem reasonable. What right thinking person could have any problem with this troll taking a few pennies of you for doing absolutely nothing? Its not so much to ask for, is it?

Certainly not worth getting slapped with court action simply because you have "principles". Just pay little money and nothing bad will happen to your nice little podcast. It would be a shame if you had to stop. Think of it just like extortion... , I mean, a tax. There, not so bad, was it?

Nothing new... (0, Troll)

Slur (61510) | about 6 months ago | (#46573007)

After all religion is the patent troll of human experience.

You should have to defend patents, or lose them (4, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 6 months ago | (#46573031)

I'm tired of hearing about patent holders coming out years (maybe a decade in this case?) after something has already been in common use, and declare that they invented it. Patents should be like trademarks in this regard in that if you don't protect it from the beginning, you lose it. You shouldn't be able to make claims about something that's already being used for year by hundreds of millions of people around the world. It's not just this case, but many others, and it doesn't just affect small time guys but big time guys too. I remember some company coming around years after a game console was released (can't remember which one) saying they had a patent on the controller. You shouldn't be allowed to let somebody infringe on your patent for years and then demand all the backpay. There are too many patents for the people making the products to know if they are infringing. If you have so many patents that you can't keep track of whether or not people are infringing, maybe it's time to let a few of them go.

Re:You should have to defend patents, or lose them (5, Informative)

Grond (15515) | about 6 months ago | (#46573205)

The law already recognizes this. First, damages for patent infringement can only go back six years. Second, the standard for issuing an injunction takes into consideration how long a patentee sat on its rights and the extent to which the public has become dependent upon the wide availability of the invention. Third, there is an equitable doctrine called laches that can prevent a claim from being made after a long time, sort of like a flexible, implicit statute of limitations.

Re:You should have to defend patents, or lose them (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 6 months ago | (#46573721)

6 years is too long. Most products don't even stay on the market for that long anymore. Most companies don't sell the same products year after year, because they have to innovate. You shouldn't be able to come around after 3 years of a product selling all over the world and claim they were infringing on your patent all along.

Re:You should have to defend patents, or lose them (1)

sjames (1099) | about 6 months ago | (#46575533)

Now if any of that could take effect before legal costs hoover your bank account.

Re: You should have to defend patents, or lose the (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575929)

Ahh memories. my first dog was named Latches.

Re:You should have to defend patents, or lose them (1)

drexus9 (719549) | about 6 months ago | (#46574797)

Is podcasting now a ubiquitous form of internet communication — much like emoji is to messaging? To that, who invented email or the QR code? From where I'm sitting, the podcasting medium has been well established as a form of speech — much like a webpage. If episodic content over the internet is the property of a single individual, then where will all the news agencies, bloggers and the like stand? Is free speech subject to someones interpretation of digital communication? I think the comment of intent is a curious topic. No, I feel distinction of technology verses use of technology is needed. If I own a car, do I pay royalties to the inventor every time I use it — or do I pay royalties to the inventor for every car I manufacture and sell? This seems to me more software related. Is Adam Carolla developing podcasting software with the intent to sell as a podcasting software package? — or is he a user of an established technology not unlike Adobe Dreamweaver? Sounds like a lot of overlap in communications technology to me. I'm now more curious than ever on how a patent was allowed as leverage for legal action to established users so long after the world adopted its use. Someone tell me how close to racketeering is this example?

Big deal (1)

Anonymous Meoward (665631) | about 6 months ago | (#46573049)

Marc Maron has been fighting this fight for years. WTF, Slashdot?

Re:Big deal (1)

LoRdTAW (99712) | about 6 months ago | (#46573661)

More like a year: http://www.dailydot.com/entertainment/marc-maron-podcast-patent-interview/ [dailydot.com]

Last month Personal Audio filed lawsuits against three of the biggest podcasting companies: How Stuff Works, TogiEntertainment, Inc., and ACE Broadcasting, which produces the Adam Carolla Show and other podcasts. Smaller podcasters, like Maron, also received letters from Personal Audio inviting them to license the patent for a fee.

The article is dated March 12, 2013.

Re:Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574743)

More like a year: http://www.dailydot.com/entertainment/marc-maron-podcast-patent-interview/ [dailydot.com]

Last month Personal Audio filed lawsuits against three of the biggest podcasting companies: How Stuff Works, TogiEntertainment, Inc., and ACE Broadcasting, which produces the Adam Carolla Show and other podcasts. Smaller podcasters, like Maron, also received letters from Personal Audio inviting them to license the patent for a fee.

The article is dated March 12, 2013.

Which is over a year, therefore "years." Duh.

Re:Big deal (1)

LoRdTAW (99712) | about 6 months ago | (#46575059)

When someone says years, you normally understand that to mean two or more years. If you are the GP then I understood your use of years as if he was fighting this for 2 or 3 years. It has been barely over a year since Maron and others were notified.

Is the problem really patent trolls? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573053)

You need to fight this problem at the source: the patent office. Generalized patents like this shouldn't be awarded, and generalized patents already granted should be revoked. Take away the trolls ammo and tell the troll he's not getting any future ammo.

Re:Is the problem really patent trolls? (1)

wiredlogic (135348) | about 6 months ago | (#46574819)

A sane and rational reform of the USPTO would hurt the economy in East Texas. That would be an unacceptable blow to the Litigial Industrial Complex.

prior art to the 1960's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573055)

email newsletter subscribers are no different than podcasts especially where webmail is considered. The user logs to a site, receives material that may be 'episodic' and may include audio. Death to the trolls!

Oh come on ... (3, Informative)

gstoddart (321705) | about 6 months ago | (#46573155)

claiming that they own the patent for delivery of episodic content over the Internet

Once again, we have a patent which seems to say "a system and methodology for doing something well known, but with a computer".

Are the USPTO that incompetent? Podcasts of one form or another are what, 20 years old now?

This is just stupid. There is known prior art for this from at least 1993, and if someone thinks sending out the next in a series of files is an 'innovation', they and the patent examiners who awarded the patent are idiots.

Sssshhhhhh.... (1)

Dareth (47614) | about 6 months ago | (#46573555)

Quiet, do not insult the USPTO overlords. They might decide software patches are "episodic content".

No more patching games after the fact without paying the trolls then!

Re:Sssshhhhhh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573773)

Are seasons episodic content? Can I fucking patent seasons?

Fuck the USPTO.

Re:Oh come on ... (2)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 6 months ago | (#46574861)

A combination of court rulings and legislation caused the problem. The USPTO was basically forced to issue these patents. Now that the chicken has come home to roost there is going to need to be legislation and supreme court rulings that reverse the previous decisions for this to be fixed.

Some of the legislative changes have already been put in place and others are proposed. We've also already had one supreme court ruling that basically tossed business method patents and some secondary rulings that have hinted at "on a computer" patents being invalid on their face.

It takes a long time for this stuff to work through the system, consider that the changes and court rulings that created this problem happened in the 80's/90's and it's taken till now to snowball into something that's actively damaging the economy. It will likely take almost as long to wind back out of the system baring some serious legislation and authoritative ruling by the supreme court. That authoritative ruling by the supreme is highly unlikely. The high court is beyond cautious in reversing themselves. It usually takes strings of cases where they slowly erode away the foundation of the previous ruling before they reverse it. The legislature on the other hand can almost immediately reverse the situation, but patent heavy companies like IBM aggressively campaign against patent reform.

Re:Oh come on ... (1)

Captain_Chaos (103843) | about 6 months ago | (#46575281)

Are the USPTO that incompetent?

It's been explained to me that this is standard MO for the USPTO. They never check patents before a cursory glance, and only when it is challenged do they actually look into the merits of it. Apparently this is because they just don't have (anywhere near) the amount of manpower they would need to keep up with the vast number of incoming patent applications.

Anyone know how true this is?

Re:Oh come on ... (1)

Captain_Chaos (103843) | about 6 months ago | (#46575323)

Fuck, I'm getting senile. "before a cursory glance" should be "beyond a cursory glance" of course.

JUst when you think there are no more good example (2)

MitchDev (2526834) | about 6 months ago | (#46573165)

More proof that the whole IP field (patents, copyrights, etc.) is totally out of control and needs to be re-written from the ground up.

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 months ago | (#46573633)

No it isn't, and no it doesn't. Some people abusing the system doesn't mean you throw out the system.
Oh no! a car model had a problem lets redesign all cars from the bottom up!

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574025)

Other than rent seeking by companies, and ensuring the heirs of an author have exclusive rights to make money off their long dead relatives ... what the FUCK does the patent and IP system actually provide us with?

What value to society does Di$ney having an infinite copyright on Mickey Mouse provide? The answer is NONE AT ALL.

I'm inclined to agree with the OP. The entire patent and IP system has become entirely about large multi-nationals and patent trolls having a strangle hold on the rest of the world.

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574057)

That's a really poor analogy.

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 6 months ago | (#46574217)

Some people abusing the system doesn't mean you throw out the system.

Yes you do. The system is corrupt by design for the sole purpose of protecting entrenched interests. Putzing around with it will fix nothing. Out it goes!
When a car has a fatal flaw, you damn well better redesign it!

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (1)

MitchDev (2526834) | about 6 months ago | (#46574905)

Exactly. The system DOES NOT WORK for the it's original purpose of enriching the common good with LIMITED monopolies.

There's nothing limited about them anymore, they continue in perpetuity...

Re:JUst when you think there are no more good exam (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574965)

Don't even bother. I could copy and paste what the OP said in a thread about the relation of Chandrasekhar limit and type 1a supernova and still get modded up before someone who mentions the relationship between the "standard candle" and the amount of nickel-56 in the reaction.
 
IP law is just as much a dead horse around here as religion or politics.

Or you know here is a thought (-1, Offtopic)

DarkOx (621550) | about 6 months ago | (#46573247)

Its been more than decade, maybe we just don't reauthorize the PATRIOT act.

I am still trying to figure out... (2)

imatter (2749965) | about 6 months ago | (#46573365)

How a cassette tape device in any way resembles a digital audio system where you can download a file that has a playlist and that playlist is updated periodically. Logan says he wanted his product to be digital but just didn't get there.

...and then there is this Podcasting History [wikipedia.org] , oddly no mention of PersonalAudio - Pioneers in Playlists & Episodic Content.

On a side note, I think I have prior art. I used to do that with my Vic 20, of course when you put the cassette in the walkman the sound that came out was hard to listen to.

Re:I am still trying to figure out... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46573439)

On a side note, I think I have prior art. I used to do that with my Vic 20, of course when you put the cassette in the walkman the sound that came out was hard to listen to.

Yep I remember well developing an indexing system for the beginning of each datasette for the Commodore VIC-20 personal computer which essentially was a menu for the content (programmes) contained on the datasette (data cassette). As fare as the topic of the article though I recall episodic serials broadcast on the radio pre-dating the patent trolls claim to "the invention of upcoming episodes."

Flawed example (1)

PPH (736903) | about 6 months ago | (#46574557)

Logan says he wanted his product to be digital but just didn't get there.

In his Slashdot Q&A, Logan gives his reasoning as to why inventors should not be required to create a working copy of their invention. But the example he cites, the capacitive tough screen, was actually produced by its original inventor, Bill Pepper. Pepper just couldn't find a market for his invention (originally developed as an input device for music synthesizers). So he sold the patent rights to Logan's company who successfully marketed it.

This is as it should be. Pepper put in the work and received compensation for it. Logan couldn't even glue existing bits of technology together.

Re:Flawed example (1)

imatter (2749965) | about 6 months ago | (#46574995)

My example or Logan's? Logan's is definitely flawed.

It's funny I searched for Peppers patents and didn't find anything. I did find this though Bob Moog [mit.edu] read the second to last paragraph.

Re:Flawed example (1)

PPH (736903) | about 6 months ago | (#46575597)

Logan's, in his Q&A session on Slashdot (link in summary). I never did the search, but if there is in fact no such Bill Pepper touchscreen patent, then Logan was making stuff up to blow smoke up Slashdot's ass. In which case, he earns a quick Plonk.

Pat the Ent (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 6 months ago | (#46573407)

How can you patent using the Internet as a printing press? Cloning and copying and transferring data is core to what it is.

If someone invents roads, is there suddenly a land grab to patent using roads to ship X, or Y, or Z?

Just bust the patent or explain somthing to me (1)

portwojc (201398) | about 6 months ago | (#46573509)

How hard could this patent be to get around? Parent claims are only 1,13,23 and 31. The first of those three talk about in some form right off the bat of "reproducing media program files". The media file isn't being reproduced. It's saved and played. Plus those seem to be centered on the player - which shouldn't be the problem of the podcaster right?

31 is the harder one but that looks like a playlist or like an RSS file of sorts. Check this file and see if there is something new in the list available.

Either that or I'm off base so just don't be a troll.... humor attempt failed...

Re:Just bust the patent or explain somthing to me (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 6 months ago | (#46573651)

" The media file isn't being reproduced."
you don't know how podcasting works, do you?

Adam is fighting patent trolls by the sweat of his (2)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about 6 months ago | (#46573515)

unibrow.

Smart arse (1, Funny)

Bill Agner (3592251) | about 6 months ago | (#46573599)

Give me a break, this guy is nothing more than a clown, who kissed the Blarney Stone one too many times. Personally, I hope this guy becomes another footnote in the small history of jerks on the radio.

Prior Art? (1)

bitingduck (810730) | about 6 months ago | (#46573631)

Was it really not filed until 2009? Isn't there more than 10 years of prior art on this?

I can probably dig up more than a few sites that had episodic content accessible by predetermined URLs that long predated the filing. Probably from enough different content providers to declare it obvious (in the patent sense) as well.

Re:Prior Art? (1)

PPH (736903) | about 6 months ago | (#46574401)

2009?

Well, in his Slashdot Q&A session, Logan says "filed in 1996". But then he went on to sell prerecorded cassette tapes. And yet, the technology to distribute and play digital audio predates that by nearly 10 years. My Macintosh SE could do it, albeit without "the web" or RSS.

Even without an HTTP-based client server, adding an RSS-like capability to a player-client was a trivial adaption of existing technology. And his company couldn't do it, so they went back to cassette tapes.

Patents are supposed to be issued for innovations that are non-trivial. Can't hook together existing technology to sort a list by by date, fetch a file off a server and play it? No patent for you!

Dialup? Windows 95? (4, Informative)

camperdave (969942) | about 6 months ago | (#46573833)

The patent specifies a dialup connection to the internet using a SLIP/PPP connection:

The facilities provided by the operating system, such as Windows 95, typically includes multimedia support, as noted above, as well as a standard WINSOCK TCP/IP stack and modem dial up driver software to support a SLIPP/PPP Internet connection, as next discussed.

To effect these file transfers, the modem 115 is connected via conventional dial up telephone SLIP or PPP TCP/IP series data communication link 117 to an Internet service provider...

How about this bit:

At a time determined by player 103 monitoring the time of day clock 106, a dial up connection is established via the service provider 121 and the Interent to the FTP server 125 and the download compiliation 145 is transferred to the program data store 107 in the player 103.

So, how much of this patent applies if I'm using linux over a full time cable internet connection to access Sheldon Cooper's latest Fun with Flags podcast?

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (2)

Viol8 (599362) | about 6 months ago | (#46574081)

Seems to me they're trying to claim royalties on any method of downloading an audio file. Which is utterly absurd. Doesn't bother me , I'm not american , but there's something seriously fecked up with US law that it allows this kind of nonsense.

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (1)

mlyle (148697) | about 6 months ago | (#46574477)

What counts are the claims, not the description of how it works. You won't find Windows 95, SLIP, etc, in the claims.

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (1)

CrankyFool (680025) | about 6 months ago | (#46574649)

Typically, the way these patents are written, the pattern is "a system and a method to do FOO; here's one possible, but not exclusive or reference, implementation of our idea: BAR" where BAR (e.g. the win95 and modem stuff above) is meant to be an illustration of how an idea like this would work, rather than detailing the specific requirements for the idea to work. In other words, the fact they're using Windows 95 and modem is likely, largely, irrelevant to the actual meat of their claim.

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (1)

rilister (316428) | about 6 months ago | (#46574957)

(IANAL, but) that's not how patents work: you're reading the preferred embodiment, which apart from showing that they've figured out *a way* to do this, doesn't really matter at all. The important bit (what determines infringement) is the claims, starting on page 32 (col 46), of which there are 35.
To make it even easier, you only really have to read the independent claims (1, 13, 23, 31). Every numbered claim that includes the text "as set forth in claim X" doesn't matter unless you're infringing claim X.

So let's look at independent claim 1:
"What is claimed is: A media player for acquiring and reproducing media program files which represent episodes as said episodes become available, said media player comprising: a digital memory, a communication port..., a processor..., an output unit for reproducing ... the media files."

Sounds like iTunes. Version 4.9 of iTunes, launched in June 28, 2005 was the first to have podcast support (according to Wikipedia). I don't even slightly believe that iTunes was the first podcast player.

I'm guessing claim 31 is the one that they're attacking Adam et al with, but it does seem like this patent talks about the enabling technology, but the people who product the content. Still, I'm sure they have lawyers that can reasonably read it that way.

These things are (sometimes) intentionally broad, but it's the job of the examiner at the USPTO to figure out if these claims pass the usual tests: obviousness ("to one skilled in the art"), novelty ("prior art") and eligibility (ie. not a matter for copyright, like, say, a trademark). Obvious to you because you've been using podcasts for a decade is not the same as obvious to someone at the time this was filed, but the priority/filing date here is Mar 4th 2009.

Hmm. Well, is the claim obvious for 2009, given iTunes 4.9 was launched in 2005? Seems so to me, but like I say, IANAL.

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (2)

rilister (316428) | about 6 months ago | (#46575071)

Oops. my bad. Just noticed that under "Related US Application Data" it calls out that this is a division of another patent, filed Oct 2, 1996. Now that *is* interesting.

Are you sure that this idea was 'obvious' in 1996? I was in college studying bending beams at that time and sure as heck hadn't thought of downloading episodes of comedy podcasts. I can't say what everyone else was up to.

For reference, the claim on this patent is pretty much the same:
1. A player for reproducing selected audio program segments comprising, in combination:
means for storing a plurality of program segments, each of said program segments having a beginning and an end,
means for receiving and storing a file of data establishing a sequence in which said program segments are scheduled to be reproduced by said player,
means for accepting control commands... means for continuously reproducing said program segments in the order... [+ bunch of controls for navigating media]

Again, IANAL, but this seems to be a description of something that might well have been a new idea in 1996. I dunno. The obviousness test is an interesting one, and I still can't figure why they can go after media producers, when the patent sounds like it would result in Apple, Sony and the software/device people infringing.

Re:Dialup? Windows 95? (1)

camperdave (969942) | about 6 months ago | (#46576201)

Again, IANAL, but this seems to be a description of something that might well have been a new idea in 1996. I dunno. The obviousness test is an interesting one, and I still can't figure why they can go after media producers, when the patent sounds like it would result in Apple, Sony and the software/device people infringing.

My guess would be that this is multifaceted. The 1996 patent is due to expire in 2016, so by delaying to enforce it until now they will have more fish to fry. Also, by going after the smaller infringers, they build both a precedent for inforcement, and a fund for pursuing larger infringers. If you're going to go after Apple, Sony etc, then you're going to need good backing both from a precedent and from a financial point of view.

Yes and (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about 6 months ago | (#46575373)

the download compiliation 145 is transferred to the program data store 107 in the player 103.

Um, like me, I think most people use a podcatcher or iTunes to download the 'casts, not the actual player. I suppose phones can download them directly, but it doesn't explicitly mention phones, does it?

Why sue the podcasters themselves? (2)

RogueWarrior65 (678876) | about 6 months ago | (#46573885)

Why isn't Personal Audio suing the companies that make the software to allow podcasts to be created and served? Do they think those companies have a much stronger legal team and therefore are choosing to go after the defenseless?

Re:Why sue the podcasters themselves? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46576197)

Quite simply, because this isn't a patent troll case. Here is the best discussion I've heard on it: https://www.noagendaplayer.com/listen/598/2-05-44

Personal Audio is the original patent holder and has not sold, nor acquired this patent in the sense of a traditional patent "troll." Many companies, including Apple, already pay them for use of this patent, which is why they are not being sued.

Patent Defenders! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46574483)

Who's calling them "trolls" [forbes.com] ?

This is not a patent troll case (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575005)

We can all agree that our patent system is broken, but this is not a patent troll case. Here is a great discussion on it by Adam Curry: https://www.noagendaplayer.com/listen/598/2-05-44

Personal Audio has always owned this patent and companies like Apple are not being sued because they actually pay Personal Audio a fee to use their patent witin iTunes, while a show like Corolla's does not.

Re:This is not a patent troll case (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575885)

so they just ignored every podcast until they became notable enough to make a huge amount of money

right OP AC in kahoots with PA ..|..

Prior Art (3, Informative)

TheSync (5291) | about 6 months ago | (#46575069)

1993: Carl Malamud launched Internet Talk Radio [wikipedia.org] the "first computer-radio talk show, each week interviewing a computer expert" distributed "as audio files that computer users fetch one by one." I suspect he was using PCM or delta PCM codec, the files were huge, and probably could only be played back on Sun workstations.

1995: Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner started Audionet. Here are downloadable files from Dec. 1996 [archive.org] and I suspect there were earlier ones.

April 1995: RealAudio released by RealNetworks. This was a watershed in audio codec efficiency, and started the launch of a lot of downloadable audio programs.

1996: Microsoft releases NetShow 1.0, a competing streaming player to RealAudio.

I also believe that William Mutual's itv.net was delivering audio files of programs in 1996.

I had a RealAudio server in 1996 and probably was serving up audio files, but frankly I can't remember. I definitely was doing so by 1997.

Is there a podcast of this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#46575095)

Where can I download the podcast about this topic?

Why again? (0)

Opportunist (166417) | about 6 months ago | (#46575681)

Why again is it still illegal to shoot patent trolls on sight? It's not like they serve any sensible purpose.

so much murder in america (0)

maliqua (1316471) | about 6 months ago | (#46575695)

why is none of it towards these kinds of people

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