I’m sick of Facebook.  The name makes me cringe every time the talking heads on CNBC spout out the same regurgitated facts; all too reminiscent of Armani  clad penguins feeding vast fields of their young.  Regardless, here’s some news that might  get a smile out of your spiteful inner self: lawsuits against the social media giant are rapidly piling up as we near the initial public offering.  No, the company didn’t decided to go on one last rampant crime spree just before going public.  It’s the scent of money in the air that drives the shoals of patent lawyers into a frenzy, the metamorphosis of a galvanizing concept into billions upon billions of dollars.  And Facebook is the fattest victim to enter their waters in quite a while…

From Reuters:

“Last year, Facebook was named as a defendant in 22 lawsuits accusing it of patent infringement, double the number from 2010, according to a Reuters analysis of court documents on legal database Westlaw, a Thomson Reuters unit.  Among the lawsuits is one alleging Facebook violated a patent that covers the core ability to transmit messages to large networks of users. Facebook said in a court filing earlier this month that it will seek to dismiss that lawsuit.

Previously, the bulk of legal challenges brought by patent holders against tech companies has focused on markets like smartphones, with defendants including Apple and Microsoft.  The attacks against Facebook signal that social media has become a new front in the Silicon Valley patent wars. The company’s adversaries include a former lawyer at Kirkland & Ellis, one of the biggest U.S. law firms, whose new firm filed the lawsuit over how Facebook transmits messages.

Before 2010, online game developer Zynga, Web discount deals operator Groupon and professional social network operator LinkedIn had not faced a single patent lawsuit, Westlaw data show. Last year, the year those three companies went public, the lawsuits mounted.

Facebook faces more patent cases than any of those other companies.”



via Analysis: Patent plaintiffs target Facebook as IPO approaches | Reuters.

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