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360Google Street ViewGSVLawsuitsLegalPatents

Matterport & Google Street view customer getting sued14190

WGAN Fan
Club Member
Buffalo, New York
GETMYVR private msg quote post Address this user
Hey everyone, a few years back I used my Matterport camera and then uploaded through Matterport to Google to post a virtual tour for a retail customer.

The customer just got a threatening letter from Tour Technology Software Inc claiming infringement on their patent.

As matterport service providers and Google Street view photographers are we violating a patent???

What do you know about this company?
I'm assuming the matterport camera is fully patented?
I'm assuming that since matterport allows these 360 images to be uploaded to Google then it must be legal?

What do you guys think about this.
Post 1 IP   flag post
BlueSuiteStudio private msg quote post Address this user
Hello, Apparently this company has done this before in the past. (2019)
With a quick google search I found a few references to them and the weak
cases they have made to try and "extort" money from small companies.

Google Search
https://www.google.com/search?q=Tour+Technology+Software+Inc+and+matterport&oq=Tour+Technology+Software+Inc+and+matterport&aqs=chrome..69i57.34906j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Forum discussion on Tour Tech Software - Real or Scam?
https://ivrpa.org/forums/topic/being-sued-for-virtual-tour-patent-ivrpa-referenced-real-or-scam/

I'm not a legal advisor in any way but I thought the conversation made a few valid points that may
give you some direction to further investigate the validity of the letter.

- Johnny Benton
Post 2 IP   flag post
TheGknee private msg quote post Address this user
From the same forum as above:

"If you ignore the complaint there will be an automatic judgment against you. Even if you can successfully defend against it, the complainant can simply walk away with no consequences while you are still out all that money (in America, at least). They obviously expect you to cut your losses and make a deal. Some people have called this legal extortion.

Some Background… and this is super-simplified: IVRPA sponsored a reexamination of the ‘400 patent. We could only afford to do this as an “ex-parte” reexamination, which meant we made our argument, once, “on paper” but had no right to argue in person. That would have cost at least 10 times as much, a minimum of $150,000 at the time. We were amazingly successful. Every single claim of the patent was struck down. But the patent owner has the right to argue their case in person, which they did. All claims remained struck down. Then the patent owner had the right to rewrite the claims to make them patentable, as long as the rewrite was based on the patent description. They did that and it was still struck down. So they did it again and again. Each time the claims became less clear and where drawn in ways that weren’t allowed, IMO."

Sounds like either a scam or a faulty ground argument. Proceed with caution.
Post 3 IP   flag post
WGAN Fan
Club Member
Buffalo, New York
GETMYVR private msg quote post Address this user
I read up on it a little and I've heard they have, however I'm also under the assumption that Matterport and Google Street view have been running these platforms together for quite a while, so every matterport photographer who uploads to Google Street view would be subject to the same scrutiny my customer is. I'm not sure matterport would throw us under the bus like this, and the license application they sent has no letterhead and looks completely unofficial. This would definitely pose a serious problem for Matterport if in fact they have us shooting and using their camera in violation of a patent. It just doesn't sound right.
Post 4 IP   flag post
dndavis private msg quote post Address this user
None of the following should be taken as legal advice, but:

It's unlikely that photographers or their clients are infringing any patents here, since they didn't invent or build the allegedly infringing products or services;

Good luck with any claim the photographer or his client "knew of, or reasonably should have known of" patent infringement. A degree in science or engineering is required for admission to the patent bar;

Even if this were a legitimate claim, photographers and small businesses would not be the real targets. Google and Matterport would be the alleged infringers and the deep pockets for recovery.
Post 5 IP   flag post
WGAN Forum
Founder &
WGAN-TV Podcast
Host
Atlanta, Georgia
DanSmigrod private msg quote post Address this user
Hi All,

A WGAN Forum related discussion: (two years later)

Patent Troll: Has anyone dealt with this? Suggestions on how to handle?

Dan
Post 6 IP   flag post
Philly private msg quote post Address this user
Interesting threads, and I'm definitely wondering what ever happened in this case with @GETMYVR and his client.

I think we are all in agreement it's a faulty argument or misdirected at individuals, with that being said I don't think our clients will sleep great at night regardless of the argument's merit. I could see this being a problem if it arises with a client you hardly know.

Edit: there is another good thread here where @Wingman laid out a very good and reasonable plan of action (not legal advice) https://www.wegetaroundnetwork.com/topic/14879/page/1/pay-for-license-infringement-phishing-email-to-client/
Post 7 IP   flag post
WGAN Fan
Club Member
Buffalo, New York
GETMYVR private msg quote post Address this user
Ignore. It's a scam. The reason they haven't successfully sued Matterport - the big $$ - is that there is no cause to sue & collect.
Post 8 IP   flag post
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