Grounds for Challenging a U.S. Patent

Michael Feldstein, e-Listerate, Aug 09, 2006
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Scott Leslie points to the inaugural winner of the new Educause 'Catalyst' award, 'Course Management Systems'. Yes, that's right - not a single product, but the entire field, created, as Educause notes, "in pockets of innovation throughout the world."

Michael Feldstein contributes grounds for challenging a U.S. patent.

Michael Feldstein, in an Open Letter to eCollege, calls that company to task for its own patents. While not equating it with Blackboard, Feldstein still seeks assurances that the patents are merely defensive and suggests that eCollege donate them to the OSDL patent common.

Joseph Hart shares his personal history with Blackboard at Eastern Oregon University (EOU). "Blackboard abandoned their base of small institutions to go after the big money large institutions, but many of the most prestigious large institutions are operating within consortia to push forward open source efforts; therefore Blackboard is in danger of losing both the big plums and the little plums."

Alfred Essa contributes a fictitious conversation between Blackboard's CEO and Blackboard's Spinmeister.

Ken Reimer, founder of the e-learning comopany Learnstream, says it "seems that BlackBoard wants to take over the world, with claims that most Learning Management Systems contain proprietary inventions." How to stop them? It's all about money, he says. "If we could band together, we could make an economic impact, and demonstrate some real strength to fight these LMS patent claims."

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