On the heels of a legal controversy surrounding the Kindle 2’s text-to-speech feature, Discovery Communications has now filed what appears to be a pretty solid lawsuit against Amazon claiming infringement on an e-book patent filed 10 years ago.
“They worked very hard to make it as bullet proof as possible,” said David Lowry, an intellectual property attorney. “They prepared this patent to sue people…”
Interestingly enough, the patent filed in 1999 was approved in November of 2007, the same month that the first Kindle launched. And all of the hype and sales estimates have likely encouraged Discovery to finally take action…
It doesn’t appear as if Discovery’s motive is getting into the e-book or electronics businesses either, as they are predominantly a media and content company. But Discovery founder John S. Hendricks actually did quite a bit of work in the ’90s that would seem ahead of his time surrounding the digitization of media.
Hendricks really was ahead of his time. If your background included working with and for industries where patents were critical – you kept track of absolutely everything. Which he apparently did.