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To read comments to this article, go here
JPEG Patent Claim Surrendered!
Thursday, November 02 2006 @ 03:55 PM EST

Here you go, straight from the Public Patent Foundation's press release: Forgent Networks has stopped asserting its patent against JPEG, has dropped all its pending cases that were asserting the patent, and says that it won't file any other infringement claims based on the patent. You'll recall that PubPat challenged the patent last year and the USPTO reexamination led to rejection of the broadest claims.

On its website page on the Forgent Networks JPEG Related Patent, PubPat provides the history:

PUBPAT filed a formal request with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in November 2005 to revoke the patent Forgent Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: FORG) is widely asserting against the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) international standard for the electronic sharing of photo-quality images. In its filing, PUBPAT submitted previously unseen prior art showing that the patent, which was issued in 1987 to Forgent's subsidiary Compression Labs Inc., was not new and, as such, should be revoked. The PTO granted PUBPAT's request in February 2006 and rejected the broadest claims of the patent in May 2006. In November 2006, Forgent abandoned all assertion of the patent.

You can get the legal filing and the USPTO orders from that page. Hey, sometimes there's good news. Not all the news stories can be about somebody's corporate strategy to steal Red Hat's customers.

Here's the meat from the press release:

************************

JPEG PATENT CLAIM SURRENDERED:
Forgent Networks Ends Assertion of Patent Challenged by PUBPAT

NEW YORK -- November 2, 2006 -- The Public Patent Foundation ("PUBPAT") announced today that Forgent Networks (Nasdaq: FORG) has stopped asserting its patent against the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG) international standard for the electronic sharing of photo-quality images. PUBPAT successfully initiated a challenge to the patent last year and this week Forgent dropped all of its pending cases asserting the patent and stated that it would not file any other infringement claims based on the patent.

Forgent Networks acquired the '672 Patent through the purchase of Compression Labs, Inc. in 1997 and began aggressively asserting it against the JPEG standard through lawsuits and the media in 2004. PUBPAT filed its challenge to the patent in November 2005 and the Patent Office rejected the patent's broadest claims in May of this year.

"By completely ending its assertion of the '672 patent, Forgent has now finally admitted that the patent has no valid claim over the JPEG standard," said Dan Ravicher, PUBPAT's Executive Director. "This utter capitulation by Forgent is long overdue, but a cause for public relief nonetheless."

More information about the Forgent Networks patent formerly asserted against the JPEG standard, including a copy of the Patent Office's Office Action rejecting its broadest claims, can be found at http://www.pubpat.org/forgentjpeg.htm.


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