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MPEG LA Claims 3 TV Makers Infringed Patents

Denver — Patent pool administrator MPEG LA said Wednesday that four ATSC patent owners have filed patent-enforcement actions in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida against Craig Electronics, Curtis International and ViewSonic.

According to the complaints, the manufacturers marketed television sets allegedly without acquiring certain licenses to essential ATSC digital broadcast standard patents used in the products.

The four licensor/plaintiffs listed in the complaints include: Zenith, Philips, Panasonic and Columbia University.

The suits seek monetary damages, enhancements, legal fees and injunctions, according to documents supplied by the MPEG LA.

MPEG LA’s ATSC Patent Portfolio License, which includes more than 250 ATSC essential patents in 28 countries, has some 160 licensees accounting for most ATSC products, including high-definition ATSC digital television receivers, in the current market.

There are nine licensors in the MPEG LA’s ATSC Patent Portfolio License. 

Tom O’Reilly, an MPEG LA research and public relations manager, each licensor decides whether or not to seek legal action and could not say why only four of the nine licensors opted to act at this time.