Heat Turned Up on Streaming Video Patents

After a recent legal setback, a California company that claims its patents cover the streaming video technology used by adult Web sites is boosting efforts to collect money from a very different group of streaming video users: colleges and universities. Newport Beach, Calif.-based Acacia Media Technologies Corp. has sent letters to dozens of colleges in recent days claiming the schools' use of streaming video in areas like distance learning and video lectures violates company patents. The message: pay up, or risk getting sued.

"Certainly for colleges that do a lot of distance education, this could be a major problem," said Steve Worona, director of policy and networking programs at EDUCAUSE, an association of campus information technology centers. Several colleges say the letters make even broader claims, extending beyond distance learning to cover almost anything a college does that involves moving audio and video files on computer networks.

News source: eWeek

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