back to article Groupon to pay IBM $57m after getting money off e-commerce patent settlement

Groupon has managed to secure a money-off deal in its court battle with IBM over e-commerce patents. The pair have agreed to settle the dispute, with the e-voucher biz set to pay $57m to IBM, knocking almost a third off the price tag granted by a court this summer. In July, a jury ruled that Groupon had wilfully infringed …

  1. matjaggard

    What are the patents?

    Does anyone know what patents are involved with this? Do smaller shops need to start talking to IBM?

    1. User McUser

      Re: What are the patents?

      Don't know the specific patents in this case but with them being "eCommerce" patents I'm willing to bet they all boil down to:

      "An economic thing people have done for centuries but, like, now there's a computer and/or the Internet in there? So it's different somehow. Whatever, who cares - just give us the patent already."

    2. dylan.myers
      Boffin

      Re: What are the patents?

      Patents 579-6967, 707-2849, 596-1601 and 763-1346. I believe that they're more about a platform for offering discounts directly from the merchant. Source 1 Source 2

    3. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: What are the patents?

      The patents are U.S. Patent Nos. 5,796,967, 7,072,848, 5,961,601 and 7,631,346

  2. cjcox

    IBM has patented things like breathing and movement, etc.

    IBM owns patents for everything. The sooner that company dies, the better.

    1. Lord Elpuss Silver badge

      Re: IBM has patented things like breathing and movement, etc.

      IBM invented some amazing sh*t over the years. ATMs, the hard disk, (D)RAM, barcodes, magstripes, the electron microscope, the concept of virtual machines, laser eye surgery, e-commerce, the first general-purpose mainframe (and the first Mainframe, for that matter), magnetic tape, human-readable machine code (FORTRAN), Fractals, putting people on the Moon and the first smartphone; to name just a few.

      IBM typically earns its patents, and does great things with them. Their technical and engineering expertise deserves huge respect, whatever your feelings about the current management.

      1. DCFusor Silver badge

        Re: IBM has patented things like breathing and movement, etc.

        Many of the things you mention IBM earning...well, they did do the work, mostly with zero risk, as ARPA (now DARPA), NSA, and others paid them to look into this and that and paid them rather well to do so...

    2. Mark 65 Silver badge

      Re: IBM has patented things like breathing and movement, etc.

      Don't do business in the US, problem solved. Most patents granted in the US are for things that cannot be patented in places like the EU.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: IBM has patented things like breathing and movement, etc.

        Even doing business is generally fine as long as you do it as a European entity. Trying to enforce too general US patents in EU is a failed cause so companies don't usually even try unless you are clearly copying to the point of trademark violation.

  3. Codysydney

    Yeahhhh I was working there when they added net value to the planet with this incredible patent that I remember well at the time..

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/09/18/ibm_patent_application_enlivening_teleconference_calls/

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do people still use Groupon?

    Having been the recipient of a couple of Groupon offers as 'gifts', using them makes you look like a thoughtless and cheap bastard!

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Do people still use Groupon?

      Big Blue will 'consider' giving staff access to e-voucher biz offers through corporate plan

      Well, well. Maybe a real 'jump in the air and click heels together moment' for staff handed a 'wee bonus' with their pink slips.

      How generous of 'artist formerly known as Big Blue'.

    2. Danny 14 Silver badge

      Re: Do people still use Groupon?

      ive had a look at groupon but they tend to only have offers that are nowhere near me.

      1. Dog Eatdog

        Re: Do people still use Groupon?

        Don't use groupon. Either there is a huge backlog for an offer or the service provider has gone out of business by the time you try to use it. Or sometimes both.

  5. Mystic Megabyte Silver badge
    Meh

    I thought that Groupon had vanished years ago. No sign it around here anyway.

  6. trevorde
    Trollface

    New IBM business model

    Patent troll

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