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November 28, 2005

Supreme Court Takes eBay Patent Appeal

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal by eBay over a patent dispute with MercExchange.  The patents at issue involve eBay's Buy it Now feature where consumers can buy an item for a fixed price.  The District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia found that eBay violated two patents held by MercExchange and assessed damages of $29.5 million.  However, the court declined to issue a permanent injunction against eBay.  The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held one of the patents invalid, reduced damages to $25 million, and ordered the lower court to issue the injunction.  The Supreme Court will decide whether the appeals court erred in ordering the permanent injunction once infringement of a valid patent has been determined.

The Reuters story (via the Washington Post) on this is here.

November 28, 2005 | Permalink

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