Internet companies sued over e-mail filtering patent

Google, Yahoo, AOL and Amazon are among those targeted

Google, Yahoo, AOL, Amazon.com, Borders Group and IAC/InteractiveCorp have been sued by Marshall, Texas-based Polaris IP for allegedly violating its patent for an "automatic message interpretation and routing system."

The lawsuit, filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, asks for a jury trial, damages, attorneys' fees and a permanent injunction barring the companies from continuing to use the e-mail filtering system.

Polaris' patent, U.S. Patent No. 6,411,947, deals with a system that can analyze incoming user e-mails and decide whether they can be handled automatically or need to be sent to a customer service representative. According to court documents, the patent reads, in part: "The method for automatically interpreting an electronic message may also include the step of retrieving one or more predetermined responses corresponding to the interpretation of the electronic message from a repository for automatic delivery to the source."

The lawsuit claims that the Internet companies implemented this system in violation of Polaris' patent.

An attorney representing Polaris IP could not be reached for comment. Google could not be reached for comment. A Yahoo spokeswoman declined to comment on the ongoing litigation.

Last year, Polaris sued Kana Software Inc. for allegedly violating the same patent. The companies settled the case in March, and Kana agreed to license the technology from Polaris.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Linda Rosencrance

Computerworld

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?