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OMG! Cross promotion in "More Games" violates Lodsys' patent too!

07-12-2011, 07:14 PM
Joined: Oct 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 87
OMG! Cross promotion in "More Games" violates Lodsys' patent too!

Got a letter from Lodsys few weeks ago, claiming the "Get Full Version" link in our game iFighter 1945 is infringing their patent. The "Get Full Version" link is actually for the purchase of Super Laser: The Alien Fighter. This is just a "cross promotion" and I think almost every developer is doing it. It's neither an In-App purchase nor a "Lite to Full" conversion.

I wrote back and explained the situation to Lodsys and guess what I got from them this morning:


My name is Harry Snodgrass and I have been assigned your account. I would like to respond to your email dated July 4th, 2011 attached below. First let me state that Lodsys is interested in a positive dialog with the goal of a prompt and reasonable resolution to this matter.

In your email you refer to the following - "directed to systems and methods for providers of products and/or services to interact with users of those products and services to gather information from those users and transmit that information to the provider".

The title of a patent, such as stated above, is a general description of the area the patent addresses to allow for more efficient searching of patents and their general subject matter. The patent we sent a claim chart for has a claim that is directed at eliciting from a user, through a user interface presented by the product or service, a perception of the user of the product or service.

The patent specification sets forth many different types of perceptions and how they may be elicited. One of those is through interactive services and transactions. Specifically, a perception that can be elicited is the desire of the user to indicate their desire to purchase something that is related to or complementary to the product or service.

In this specific case, the perception being elicited through the offer to the user to buy "Super Laser: The Alien Fighter" through the interface presented by iFighter 1945 is, “Do you find our games valuable enough to buy another game we think you are interested in from us?”. The elicited perception is returned to you (you are the vendor of both iFighter and Super Laser) through the revenue you receive from the app store for the purchase of the new game.

I trust that this has clarified the matter and that you now understand that we are not mistaken. We would like to enter into meaningful discussion with you about an appropriate license that is scaled to your use of our patented invention. We look forward to doing that as soon as possible.


Harry Snodgrass

Harry Snodgrass
Licensing Agent
This is just insane!!! I can't believe it! So if they make the patent description as vague as possible, they can interpret it in anyway they like?

I'm totally shocked

Our games: ChocChocPop, iFighter, Stone Wars, Super Laser, Caveman's Quest HD, iFighter 2: The Pacific 1942
Website: http://www.epicforce.com
Twitter: http://twitter.com/epicforce
07-12-2011, 08:13 PM
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 3,739
The dude's name is Harry Snodgrass.


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07-12-2011, 08:50 PM
Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Where you dont live
Posts: 1,661
Originally Posted by MidianGTX View Post
The dude's name is Harry Snodgrass.

Imagine the hell that kid must have gone through in middle and high school.....thats probably why he wanted a career in law
07-12-2011, 09:05 PM
Joined: Oct 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 303
Now that Apple has intervened in relation to some of the Lodsys lawsuits, I think you would do best to contact Apple to take advice. Hopefully, if they're on the case, you won't have to spend cash on instructing your own solicitors.

If you negotiate directly with Lodsys at this stage, you could not only complicate things for yourself, but also for other developers caught up in this mess.
07-12-2011, 10:04 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: Neverland
Posts: 348
I was shocked too.

Things change, roll with punches. But I know, all is gonna come together.
07-13-2011, 12:51 AM
Seriously... Harry Snodgrass?? Are we absolutely sure he's not some Nigerian scammer?

But yea, contact Apple's legal department and apprise them of the situation. Hopefully they can advise you on what to do next.
07-13-2011, 03:48 AM
What's fishy in this situation is you can't measure the cross promotion regarding revenue for taking a license.

Some of their - how you call them in the US ? - patents - are running out in April 2012.

Contact Apple.
07-13-2011, 04:32 AM
I have a patent for 'use of images, words or any other suggestive method that may encourage a user to possibly at some stage think about purchasing an application on a mobile electronic device'.

So if you have an icon for your app i demand that you pay me 1% of your revenue to license my patent.

Are we all agreed?

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07-13-2011, 05:36 AM
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: ΖΞN
Posts: 304
Originally Posted by BravadoWaffle View Post
Seriously... Harry Snodgrass?? Are we absolutely sure he's not some Nigerian scammer?

But yea, contact Apple's legal department and apprise them of the situation. Hopefully they can advise you on what to do next.
Thought I would point out that all countries have scammers.

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07-13-2011, 05:53 AM
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: Singapore
Posts: 1,770
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I wouldn't be worried, these guys can't win Apple