RealNews

BlackBerry Battle Could Reverberate

A LITTLE-KNOWN Virginia company fired a new salvo last week in a lawsuit that threatens to take away one of the prized possessions of the technologically astute: the little messaging device known as the BlackBerry. The BlackBerry, produced by Research in Motion Ltd. of Waterloo, Ontario, is one of several hand-held devices on the market that allow a person to send and receive e-mail without being hooked up to a cable or phone line. But it has been praised for being especially nimble and is the device of choice not just among many high-tech business people but also members of Congress and certain Hollywood stars (Matt Damon and Pamela Anderson among them, according to one report). In court papers filed last week, NTP Inc., a holding company based in Arlington, Va., accused Research in Motion of unfairly lobbying the Patent and Trademark Office to re-examine five patents that were central to NTP’s victory last November over Research in Motion in a patent infringement suit. NTP was awarded $23.1 million. The director of the Patent and Trademark Office, James E. Rogan, a former congressman from California, ordered the re-examinations on Dec. 26. Full Story

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