Former Microsoft executive Paul Allen is suing the who's who of Internet companies over patent infringement.
A lawsuit filed last week in the Western District of Washington court, alleges that AOL, Apple, eBay, Facebook, Google, Netflix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, Staples, Yahoo, and YouTube have all violated for patents originating from Interval Research.
Interval Research was a think tank Allen founded in 1992. IP Law & Business magazine reporter Joe Mullin said that the company closed down in 2000, "but the lawsuit is necessary to monetize the investment that Allen made in the organization, said David Postman, a spokesman for Allen."
The patents cover "a variety of key processes in e-commerce," Postman told Mullin. "Interval Research was earlyand righton key pieces of the Internet," said Postman. "It's important now to protect that investment. We believe these companies are using that technology, in both e-commerce and search."