→ Apple Settles Lawsuit Over Online Music Distribution Patent

A patent troll called Sharing Sound sued a host of companies, alleging that all of them infringed on a patent for online music distribution.

Targets were Apple (iTunes), Microsoft (Zune), Napster, Rhapsody, Brilliant Digital Entertainment (Kazaa) and Sony / Sony Ericsson. Similar actions were filed a week earlier against Amazon, Netflix, Wal-Mart, Barnes & Noble and GameStop.

The patent being contested – U.S. Patent Number 6,247,130, titled “Distribution of musical products by a website vendor over the Internet” – would essentially prevent all these companies from using any type of online store environment which allows them to provide song previews, a shopping cart or even a music player.