If so, expect your fees to rise, with TiVo’s recent $74 million patent lawsuit victory, sure to be leveraged against cable TV companies who offer TiVo-like DVRs. (The award might actually be tripled, because the jury found the infringement was “willful.”)
This report of the decision states “In a case cast as crucial to TiVo’s (TIVO) survival, a federal jury decided that EchoStar Communication Corp. (DISH) copied key technologies from the digital video recording pioneer and awarded TiVo nearly $74 million.”
I doubt, however, that the jury really found that EchoStar copied TiVo’s technology. Unlike copyright law, patent law does not require a showing that the patentee’s technology was copied. This is yet one of the many significant injustices of patent law: Independent invention is not a defense to patent infringement. Even if you come up with a technique or device entirely on your own, if it is too similar to something someone else has filed (or might later file!–earlier invention is also not a defense) with this US government agency, you can’t use it without their permission.
Sad that this unjust system, which is tantamount to legalized theft, is defended by some advocates of capitalism and property rights.