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IBM Sues Priceline Over E-Commerce Patents

The only travel involving Priceline that IBM plans to take is to the U.S. District Court in Delaware.

On Monday (Feb. 9), International Business Machines Corp. filed a lawsuit against Priceline Group Inc., accusing it of infringing four IBM patents in the use of its travel and dining websites.

Two of the IBM patents are from the late 1990s: one tracks prior conversations with a user and the other increases speed of internet transmissions. The third patent is from 2006 and is a method of displaying internet advertising; a fourth, from 2009, deals with the improvement of a single sign-on.

IBM asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware to bar Priceline from using the patents, to award IBM royalties and to order Priceline to pay IBM’s costs and attorney’s fees. Also alleging that the infringement was willful, IBM asked for all damages to be multiplied.

IBM said it had approached Priceline about the alleged infringement, but made no headway.

“Despite IBM’s repeated demands, Priceline refuses to negotiate a license,” IBM said in its complaint. “This lawsuit seeks to stop Priceline from continuing to use IBM’s intellectual property without authorization.”

The suit alleges that Priceline also used the patented technology on its websites kayak.com and opentable.com.

According to Reuters, Priceline was not immediately available for comment.

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