PayPal sued €960m for copyright infringement

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PayPal have been sued for €960 million by a José Montet at the Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris, 3rd chamber, 2nd sectionFrance on Thursday this week. They allege that PayPal are infringing their copyright, namely the linking of a credit card to an email address in order to effect payments.

José states that the idea of linking bank accounts and email addresses to enable payments on the web was something they worked on as far back as 2000. As well as several demonstrations of the idea they also lodged the system with the French Agency for the Protection of Programs (APP) as well as depositing a printed copy with the US Copyright Office. At the time no one was interested in financially backing the idea.

According to José, PayPal infringed the copyright and profited from online payments with the use of email addresses when they were sold to eBay for $1.5billion. José wants about two thirds of the sale value in recompense.

José apparently discovered PayPal in 2007 and opened a PayPal account, and it’s possible that a five year deadline for commencing court proceedings has passed, so the case could simply be dismissed. If the case isn’t dismissed then it will have to be proven that PayPal use the same software as José’s. Another get out of jail clause would be for PayPal to prove they had implemented their solution prior to the September 2000 date that José claims copyright.

At the end of the hearing the judgement was deferred until the 8th of February 2013.


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