Today, several news services interpreted that Vringo (VRNG) received four out of six positive construction Markman rulings in its cases against tech giants; Aol (AOL), Google (GOOG), and Target Corp (TGT).
This case involves relevance filtering technology used in the search engine industry. In the mid-to-late 1990s, the amount of content (e.g., web pages) available on the Internet was relatively small compared to today. Users would frequently access Internet web pages by visiting portal sites, which presented content categorized directories through which the users could select links to available pages. The leading portal sites of the time (i.e., AOL, Lycos, etc.) used manually maintained content catalogs.
As the Internet expanded its reach, manual logs presented both accuracy problems, as well as difficulty in maintaining substantially larger amounts of information. After working together on several products, Plaintiff's Lang and Kosak developed technology that would provide more accurate search results to users by combining content-based data and collaborative feedback data from other users to satisfy a particular user's query or search request.
On September 15, 2011, I/P Engine filed a Complaint in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, alleging that the Defendants use I/P Engine's technology on various sites to provide advertising and search services.
New Relevant Information:
Vringo has entered into a definitive merger agreement with Innovate/Protect, Inc. (I/P Engine, Inc.) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Innovate/Protect, Inc.
On June 15, 2012, the Court issued a Memorandum Opinion & Order relating to the Markman hearing on June 4, 2012 in connection with the lawsuit captioned I/P Engine, Inc. v. AOL Inc. et al., Civ. Action No. 2:11-cv-512, filed in United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Norfolk Division on September 15, 2011.
A copy of the Memorandum Opinion & Order is available on the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) electronic public access service at www.pacer.uscourts.gov/ , and will be filed by Vringo, Inc. with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Vringo is a provider of software platforms for mobile social and video applications. With its award-winning video ringtone application and other mobile software platforms, including Facetones(TM), Video Remix and Fan Loyalty, Vringo transforms the basic act of making and receiving mobile phone calls into a highly visual, social experience.
Vringo's video ringtone service enables users to create or take video, images and slideshows from virtually anywhere and turn it into their visual call signature. Vringo's Facetones(TM) application creates an automated video slideshow using friends' photos from social media web sites, which is played each time a user communicates with a friend using a mobile device.
News That Was Released Today:
As reported by Dow Jones reporter; Ben Fox: Judge Sides With Vringo on Most Definitions in Patent Suit
A U.S. district court sided with video-ringtone company Vringo Inc. regarding four out of six issues in an ongoing patent case it has against a handful of major companies.
Intellectual-property firm Innovate/Protect, which agreed to merge with Vringo in March, filed a patent suit against AOL Inc., Google Inc., IAC/InterActiveCorp. (IACI), Gannett Co. Inc. (GCI) and Target Corp. last year. The company acquired eight patents from Lycos involving relevance-filtering technology and claims two of those patents were infringed.
A hearing, known as a Markman hearing, was scheduled to define the specific meanings of a handful of disputed terms in the suit, such as "collaborative feedback data" and "a scanning system." A judge on Friday sided with four out of six of Vringo's definitions, and sided with the defendants on the other two.
Shares, which were halted midday, closed Monday up 9.5% at $4.02 amid the Markman ruling. The stock has quadrupled this year, after tumbling in 2011, amid the merger deal, as well as an investment from tech investor and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.
Currently, in after hours trading VRNG has traded as high as $4.59 and may move higher on the opening Tuesday on possible short covering?
Disclosure: I am long VRNG.