Bodog's Domain Names Confiscated

Simmo!

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England
1st Technology LLC owns a patent on a process for taking bets online and claims that Bodog’s downloadable software infringes the company’s patent, which has been granted in the United States as well as elsewhere in the world.

Were this to relate to the casino side of things then this would be an RTG infringement, not a Bodog one. My bet is that this relates to sports betting, reference the quote:

1st Technology LLC owns a patent on a process for taking bets online

My bet (patent # 2340928 ;)) is that 1st Tech simply owns one particular method for taking bets which happens to be the method Bodog uses. Chances are that this only affects sports betting and only affects companies using the same specific method that alledgedly infringes the patent. It's clearly bad news for Bodog, but...

the implications for the online gaming industry as a whole are huge

:rolleyes:

...is pure conjecture. Basically we don't know the whole story yet and shouldn't necessarily take the comments of third party editorial and industry observers out of context or at face value until the full facts are known. The press love to blow things out of proportion lets not forget - the truth is often far less interesting than the speculation!
 

jetset

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Bodog (or New Bodog!) uses a special proprietary version of the RTG software which has been extensively "tweaked", I'm informed.

Some time ago Ayre purchased rights to the source code and his developers have apparently improved on it since.

This sentence from the litigation is interesting imo: "The violation relates to the method for the production and transmission of enhanced multimedia information."

That could cover a wide field, especially in a diverse group like Bodog.

Remember Molnick - the Home Gaming Network - i2corp guy who claimed he held the patents to live online gaming and launched several cases? I wonder if there is a connection to him, or if this 1st Technology LLC is another claimant to the patents on this sort of technology?
 

jetset

RIP Brian
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Update

More detail emerging on this issue. Note the Las Vegas connection!

The following article is from The Vancouver Sun:

Gambling site Bodog hit with $48-million judgment in U.S. court

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

"Online gambling website Bodog.com was out of service Monday and remained inoperative Tuesday, apparently due to a $48.6-million default judgment obtained by a Las Vegas company against Bodog in a patent infringement case.

".....but according to Nevada court documents, 1st Technology LLC of Las Vegas obtained a $48.6-million default judgement on June 14 against Bodog Entertainment Group S.A., Bodog.net and Bodog.com.

The Las Vegas company obtained the judgment after the Bodog companies failed to answer allegations, filed in U.S. District Court in Nevada, that downloaded software used by Bodog customers to facilitate its gaming activities infringed upon 1st Technology's patents.

It is not clear why Bodog officials did not respond to the allegations. One possibility is they were scared away by the U.S. Department of Justice, which has declared war on Internet gambling.

Through a series of high profile arrests of online gambling executives, the Justice Department has made it clear that online gambling is illegal and anybody operating or facilitating such activities is subject to prosecution.

Since then, (Bodog CEO Calvin] Ayre has avoided stepping on American soil, but he continues to return to Vancouver, where Bodog runs a marketing-support business in Vancouver called Riptown Media and a call centre in Burnaby called Triple Crown Customer Service.

Meanwhile, 1st Technology has been steadily tightening the noose on Bodog, which was previously run out of Costa Rica but is now based in Antigua.

In an affidavit filed in conjunction with the court action, 1st Technology lawyer Kristopher Rath complained that, despite the default judgment, Bodog "continues to act with impunity in the United States."

"The Bodog entities infringing activities are responsible for over $65 billion in cumulative transactions to date, with approximately two-thirds of this revenue currently being derived from infringing United States activities," he said.

The lawyer noted that, according to a Forbes interview with Ayre, "Bodog handled $7.3 billion dollars of revenue which translates to over $4.8 billion in revenue in the United States with revenue growing 300 percent per year since 2004."

He also noted that, according to the Forbes interview, Ayre "has amassed a current wealth of $1 billion, which was derived in large part through infringement of 1st Technology LLC's patent.

"However, despite reaping the rewards of U.S. commerce, the Bodog entities evade United States law and courts, and Mr. Ayre gloats about his companies' ability to operate above American law."

The lawyer said 1st Technology "continues to suffer massive and irreparable harm because of the Bodog entities' wrongful conduct", and the "only way to stop this harm is to enjoin Bodog's United States activities."

In the early 1990s, Ayre got into trouble with the B.C. Securities Commission over his dealings with Bicer Medical Systems, listed on the former Vancouver Stock Exchange. In 1996, he admitted to serious offences in connection with that company and agreed to a 20-year ban from the B.C. securities market.
 

SlotsWizard

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The above sounds about right. It seems a company with a patent on gaming software has successfully sued Ayre in a Seattle court for patent infringement and has been awarded $48 million.

On August 21, a writ of execution was granted and that likely allowed the plaintiff to take over the rights to the domain name.
They'll get the domain name but I doubt they'll see a penny of that $48 million.
 

jetset

RIP Brian
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Location
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Update

BODOG IGNORED PATENT LITIGATION SAYS OPPOSING LAWYER (Update)

Background to litigation against Bodog continues to surface

Following previous reports on the 1st Technology LLC vs Bodog Entertainment Group SA, further detail is beginning to emerge, along with critical comment by lawyers representing 1st Technology in its $49 million patent infringement suit against the Antiguan based online gambling group.

The confrontation apparently began last September, when 1st Technology, which has enjoyed some success in previous actions against other companies, sued Bodog before Judge Roger L. Hunt in a federal court in Nevada. Lawyers for 1st Technology claimed that Bodog was illegally using a "method and system for interactively transmitting multimedia information over a network which requires a reduced bandwidth," according to court documents.

It is alleged that Bodog failed to appear in court to defend itself and lost the case by default, and Judge Hunt issued an order that Bodog was to pay $48 937 456 to 1st Technology by March 2007 for patent infringement.

When the order had not been complied with on the due date, it appears that the case was transferred as an enforcement issue to the state of Washington sometime in June, but Bodog again failed to make an appearance, according to 1st Technology's attorney Venkat Balasubramani.

The lawyer is adamant that all appropriate notifications were correctly given for both the lawsuit in Nevada and the subsequent action in Washington state. "I can't speculate as to why they might have done that [failed to appear]. It's safe to assume they knew about it and definitely ignored it," Balasubramani added.

1st Technology was left with no alternative but to note that Bodog had failed to respond to the default judgment and ask that all Bodog domains be confiscated and transferred to them. This was so ordered by Judge John Erlick on August 21, requiring registrars to transfer Bodog related domains to the control of 1st Technology.

"The Court makes it clear that the intent of this order is to allow the Plaintiff to liquidate or otherwise monetize the Domain Names without incurring any expense," said Judge Erlick in his ruling. "Plaintiff may decide not to auction the domain names, and instead may operate the Domain Names in any manner it sees fit, including exploiting any traffic to the sites accessible via the domain names."

Balasubramani, who is expert in commercial litigation involving the Internet and technology explained that the purpose behind the order was to satisfy as far as possible the apparently ignored 1st Technology judgment.

It is becoming clear that a great deal of preparation and planning by a competent legal team has gone into the action against Bodog. Balasubramani says that 1st Technology LLC has engaged a considerable multi-legal team that is now dedicated to enforcing its judgement against Bodog, embracing commercial and intellectual property rights. It intends to demonstrate that no company that has customers in the United States is above or beyond U.S. legal jurisdiction, he said.

And apparently the message has struck home at Bodog, with a 1st Technology spokesman disclosing that lawyers from both companies are now in communication.
 

winbig

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Do you honestly think that Calvin would step foot in the USA?

What do you also bet that the DoJ "encouraged" this lawsuit to be filed?
 

jetset

RIP Brian
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1st Technologies has been successful in "persuading" a number of major online companies to license its Internet technology, it appears from googling the company and indeed from our own archived reports going back as far as 2005.

They must know that $49 million won't be easily obtained, and I'm guessing it's now all about an agreement on legal costs and licensing negotiation.

If 1st Technologies can add Bodog to it's growing list of licensees (which appears to include Playtech, Orbis-Openbet, Sportingbet and others) it will have again made its point and some cash to boot.

Bodog is in a tough position here - for all Ayre's bravado about a successful defence it seems to me that to contest this Bodog would have to accept a US court's jurisdiction over it, which could give rise to more extensive complications for its business.

Like you, I don't see Ayre risking a personal appearance in the US under present circumstances.

But the road to compromise looks to be still open.
 

Professor

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Bodogfight.com and Bodogbeat.com are now closed also.

I know Bodog wants to fight, but the branding damage all this is causing far exceeds $48M. I would negotiate a settlement ASAP.

While its doubtful that any officers of Bodog will want to appear in a US court there is no reason they couldnt have legal counsel appear to represent their interests.
 

NASHVEGAS

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Bodogfight.com and Bodogbeat.com are now closed also.

I know Bodog wants to fight, but the branding damage all this is causing far exceeds $48M. I would negotiate a settlement ASAP.

While its doubtful that any officers of Bodog will want to appear in a US court there is no reason they couldnt have legal counsel appear to represent their interests.
What is the chance Calvin and his boys/girls would be subpoenaed? I have posted for months(search) along with Rollo and a few (very) others in regards to Calvin and either have been ignored (which is reasonable) or flipped off by most here in denial.I wonder if some will now have selective memories. My posts were not totally based on speculation fwiw but of course then again hearsay and a mans past as well as his challenges and mockery of the US government offers no gurantees either. At least, some of the supposed truth is starting to surface through the media now of Calvin's shady past........time will tell if his ship has started to sink.
 

GrandMaster

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Scary stuff!



Why on earth do people keep say LOOSING?? There is no such word - the correct word is LOSING. You LOSE something, you dont LOOSE something. Sorry, but its my pet hate (besides pets that is)

I'm off to re-read the Oxford Concise....
"Loose" is a perfectly good English verb and you can certainly loose something, the only problem is that at least 90% of the time people mean "lose" when they write "loose".
 

SlotsWizard

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"Loose" is a perfectly good English verb and you can certainly loose something, the only problem is that at least 90% of the time people mean "lose" when they write "loose".

For people who don't speak English as their primary language, there are lots of "gotchas" when trying to learn English with similar-looking words, for example, lose and hose, bough and cough, brought and drought, etc.

It's a totally different situation when a native English-speaker uses "loose" in place of "lose", for example:

I wouldn't have been a looser if the slots were a little loser.

:lolup:

Anywho, back to Bodog... :p
 

Nifty29

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Turn right, then right. then right again
Yikes - didnt notice the nationality of the author there - in that situation, it's entirely forgivable. As for the others...... :mad:

"Loose" is a perfectly good English verb and you can certainly loose something, the only problem is that at least 90% of the time people mean "lose" when they write "loose".

Yes, except you would 'loosen' something to make it 'loose' - and I hope I'm not losing anything in the translation ;)

SIMMO - the only thing you have loose is a few screws :D

OK thats my soapbox session for this month......back to the old newbodog thing...
 

GrandMaster

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Yikes - didnt notice the nationality of the author there - in that situation, it's entirely forgivable. As for the others...... :mad:



Yes, except you would 'loosen' something to make it 'loose' - and I hope I'm not losing anything in the translation ;)

SIMMO - the only thing you have loose is a few screws :D

OK thats my soapbox session for this month......back to the old newbodog thing...
Here is the definition from Marriam-Webster.

Main Entry: loose
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): loosed; loosing
transitive verb
1 a : to let loose : RELEASE b : to free from restraint
2 : to make loose : UNTIE <loose a knot>
3 : to cast loose : DETACH
4 : to let fly : DISCHARGE
5 : to make less rigid, tight, or strict : RELAX
intransitive verb : to let fly a missile (as an arrow) : FIRE
 

Paddy

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Some of the posters here are getting the story out in bits and drabs, but this is much for serious for Bodog than just the domain name thing.

This has nothing to do with Calvin being afraid to set foot on US soil. He could have lawyers do that. I've spoken with a lawyer who knows the whole story and Calvin's attitude was basically, bugger off, US law doesn't matter to me.

This patent has to do with being able to send large amounts of information, such as all the graphics that are on gaming sites, over limited bandwith networks. It's a legit company with a legit patent that has to do with technology. It has nothing to do with this Mel Molnick guy and Home Gaming Network.

I've managed to go over the legal documents and now have more or less the complete picture of what legal tactics the patent holder is using.They are devastating to Bodog and unsurviveable.

I have written about all this over at Offshore Gambling Digest Link Removed ( Old/Invalid) . I'm Coldeyeme there. It saves me going over all this again if people interested can just go over there. Cut and paste back here if you like.

Basically, the story is this. The judgment is based on the number of downloads of Bodog's gaming software per year into the US. It is this gaming software that the patent holder says violates his patent. I'm sure it must otherwise Bodog would have fought the case in the US. There is nothing stopping Bodog from sending lawyers to fight any case in the US. They have lawyers in the US dealing with this now, when it's too late. They were served properly and always knew this case was going on.

The amount owed comes to $10 million based on the outrageously exaggerated figures Calvin gave Bodog in all that crap over a year ago. He's now paying for millions of players he made up to impress Forbes. There's another $39 million owed for something called the "future value" of losses that will occur for illegal use of the patent in the future.

The domain name thing is just one of literally hundreds of bullets the patent holder can fire at any and all of the Bodog "entertainment" companies. They have a Nevada court order, subsequent to their initial judgment, which says that no person or business anywhere in the US can have any business dealings whatsoever with what are called the "Bodog Entities". That includes websites, affiliates, ISP's, anyone in the media who markets or promotes Bodog, anyone who tries to even get a penny to or from them, and yes, domain name registrars.

For instance, once they get around to it, they can get a court to stop gambling911 from showing Bodog's logo or in any way promoting the company or acting as an affiliate. If Major Wager operates its business from the US, or EOG does, they can be ordered by a court in their respective states to completely stop doing business with Bodog. No television station in the US can take Bodog ads or sell pay per vue on Bodog Fight.

They have a stranglehold on all Bodog business in the US. There is a bit of an enforcement issue outside of Nevada. Let's say ION Television in New York, which has just cancelled the Bodog Fight debacle, would have tried to sell pay per vue. The patent holder would have had to have had his injunction "enjoining" order "domesticated", i.e. approved by a New York state court, and then served on ION. That is just an example, but it may already have happened.

Every state where someone is doing business with Bodog has to domesticate the Nevada order and then that person or business is stopped from any further Bodog business.

The domain name registration company was a US company in Washington State. In August, the judgment and enjoining order was domesticated to Washington State and the other day the domain name got shut down. The only reason we know about it was that you couldn't load the site any more. Many other things may have already happened.

Anyways, I'm doing what I didn't want to do. These are the OGD thread links.

You do not have permission to view link Log in or register now.
 

SlotsWizard

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Thank you for the information and links, Paddy.

Does the following statement:

It is this gaming software that the patent holder says violates his patent.

Imply that all casinos using Realtime Gaming software are violating the patent? Or is it because Bodog specifically didn't license something? Or is it not the casino software at all, but the sports/horses/etc. software which is the target of the lawsuit?
 
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