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Diamond Games Steal IP

Discussion in 'Online Casino and Poker Complaints - old section' started by Geoff Hall, Aug 26, 2005.

    Aug 26, 2005
  1. Geoff Hall

    Geoff Hall Dormant account

    Location:
    England
    As part of my work as a games inventor, I am involved with another company that produces a casino-style Hold'Em variant. The game is mainly in land-based casinos around Europe.

    My colleague has asked me to post this, on his behalf, as he has been notified of his game being used, on the Internet, without permission :-

    Texas Hold'em Poker as a House Game

    Please note that I am the owner of the Intellectual Property Rights (patent
    and copyright material) for Texas Hold'em as a House Game against the
    Dealer.

    I have not granted any licence to Diamond Games
    (You must register/login in order to see the link.,
    Stan James Casino (You must register/login in order to see the link.,
    Carib Sports Casino (You must register/login in order to see the link.) or Blues Club Casino
    (You must register/login in order to see the link.)
    to use my game (Casino Hold'em Poker) on the Internet and therefore as at
    to-day (25/Aug/2005) such use infringes my IPR and is without consent.

    The unauthorised use of my game has only recently been drawn to my
    attention.
    Does anyone out there know of any other on-line use of the game, Texas
    Hold'em Poker against the dealer?

    If so please e-mail me at This email is not visible to you.


    Stephen Au-Yeung
    Proprietor Millennium Casino Games

    Thankyou for reading this,

    Best regards

    Geoff
     
  2. Aug 26, 2005
  3. thelawnet

    thelawnet Dormant account

    Occupation:
    programmer
    Location:
    UK
    Mansion Casino has it.

    Out of interest, are game ideas copyrightable and enforceable?

    I thought the sites just changed the names and that was it.

    Like 3 card poker, which I'm sure has not been licensed by most of the software providers.
     
  4. Aug 27, 2005
  5. mary

    mary Dormant account

    Game designs (the mechanics/procedures of the game) are patentable in the US.

    They may not be outside of the US; UK explicitly calls out games as unpatentable. The actual name of the game has trademark protection internationally.

    Software companies based in the US (such as Realtime Gaming) have to honor game designer's rights. I would think that reputable companies in other jurisdictions would do so and certainly any company that has any hope of doing business in the US should it even become a regulated jurisdiction would do so (Wagerworks, Cryptologic).

    Diamond I'm afraid has always been sleazy.
     
  6. Aug 27, 2005
  7. eek

    eek Dormant account

    Thanks Mary.
    I did wonder about that stuff because the US has some pretty daft patent laws compared to other western countries.

    Software is currently under threat, apparently Amazon has the "Patent" for one click payments in the USA.
    Apparently such unique genius should not go unrecognised :notworthy

    You must register/login in order to see the link. tends to be the route other places use.

    So if I tweak BJ slightly and rotate who's the dealer every three hands I can call it eekBJ and patent it.... :D

    ...they could start it up at those online poker sites that are already loaded with tables of players and take a rake...

    PokerBJ a "new" patented game !

    Easy Peasy...

    If you ask me the present US Patent laws are a muppets charter but the underlying reason is political.
    Open source software is a huge threat to US You must register/login in order to see the link. and iffy patent laws are a good barrier to external threats.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2005
  8. Aug 27, 2005
  9. dominique

    dominique Dormant account

    Occupation:
    webmistress
    Location:
    The Boonies
    Wasn't there a case involving Dr.Ho and Webcam? Or something like that?

    There is a very fuzzy recollection of this in the recesses of my mind...
     
  10. Aug 28, 2005
  11. mary

    mary Dormant account

    That was a patent on using the internet to gamble, as opposed to a patent on a specific game.

    I think Ho and Webcam paid an inventor in the UK; I think he's being paid by some other companies too.
     
  12. Aug 28, 2005
  13. scrollock

    scrollock Senior Member

    Occupation:
    google
    Location:
    boro, uk
    in the UK most bookmakers include in their contract of employement with you, a clause regarding intellectual property rights to anything you may develop for them while in their employment. thus i think it must be a legal concept that is enforceable.
     
  14. Aug 28, 2005
  15. Geoff Hall

    Geoff Hall Dormant account

    Location:
    England
    Scrollock

    In fairness I believe that Stan James has removed the game from it's site pending investigation.

    This would add weight to what you say.
     
  16. Aug 28, 2005
  17. Annorax

    Annorax Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Poker
    Location:
    Iowa
    Something tells me this is the sort of thing an attorney could sort out a lot quicker and more effectively than anyone on these forums...unless Bryan happens to be an IP lawyer and didn't tell us :cool:

    One thing you could do to try to sort this out would be to file for an American patent on either holdem as a table game or holdem in general. Current Patent Office policy allows for patenting You must register/login in order to see the link., regardless of prior use, current use, or anything else that would matter in a civilized country. :p If Microsoft can get away with it, you can too.
     
  18. Aug 28, 2005
  19. KasinoKing

    KasinoKing WebMeister & Slotaholic.. CAG MM PABnonaccred webmeister

    Occupation:
    House-Husband and Casino Advisor
    Location:
    Bexhill on sea, England
    Geoff,
    As you know so much about this game, can you tell me why this was a push?
    (I would win in 'normal' hold'em!)
     
  20. Aug 28, 2005
  21. Macgyver

    Macgyver Dormant account PABnononaccred

    Occupation:
    Student
    Location:
    North Carolina
    It looks like (to me) it's because the Queen of Diamonds was the high card in the flush, but the Queen was a community card.

    Isn't there a small line near both hands that says "Flush Q" or is that just my bad eyesight?
     
  22. Aug 28, 2005
  23. GrandMaster

    GrandMaster Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Mathematician by day, online gambler by night.
    Location:
    UK
    Not quite.

    US CODE, TITLE 35, PART II, CHAPTER 10, 102

    "A person shall be entitled to a patent unless
    (a) the invention was known or used by others in this country, or patented or described in a printed publication in this or a foreign country, before the invention thereof by the applicant for patent, or
    (b) the invention was patented or described in a printed publication in this or a foreign country or in public use or on sale in this country, more than one year prior to the date of the application for patent in the United States, or"
     
  24. Aug 28, 2005
  25. pokeraddict

    pokeraddict Webmaster

    Occupation:
    Pro Poker Player
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Check out the kickers, the player wins this hand. This is an obvious bug or a bad rule. What did support say when you emailed them or did you not?
     
  26. Aug 29, 2005
  27. Geoff Hall

    Geoff Hall Dormant account

    Location:
    England
    KasinoKing,

    This is the problem with companies who just use the game without checking the rules/software with the designer. You should have won that hand and been paid 2/1 on your ante for the flush, so you should have made a $4 profit on the hand.

    GrandMaster,

    You are correct that you cannot patent something that is considered 'Common Knowledge' i.e has been released into the public domian. Say, for example, that you designed a completely new game and you had it installed on an Internet site. After that you would not be able to patent it - you have to do that before any release to other people.

    As far as the Hold'Em poker goes, there is a fine line between what is considered common knowledge and what can be patentable. Aside from copyright issues, the game here is protected by at least 3 full (not pending) patents. Although certain elements of 'Casino Hold'Em Poker' contain common knowledge there was enough inventiveness for the examiner to issue a US patent on the design.

    Thanks for all your replies.

    Best regards

    Geoff
     
  28. Aug 29, 2005
  29. Casinomeister

    Casinomeister Forum Cheermeister Staff Member

    Occupation:
    Homemaker
    Location:
    Bierland
    Hi Geoff,

    Does your client have a lawyer? This is definately something that needs to be addressed by someone who has expertise in this field. If he is in Europe, I can put you in touch with one who deals with this sort of thing.
     
  30. Aug 29, 2005
  31. Geoff Hall

    Geoff Hall Dormant account

    Location:
    England
    Thanks Bryan,

    If your contact is based in England then that could be very useful as we are both based there. However, any professional assistance should put him better in the picture.

    I ought to contact my lawyer in Las Vegas but thought (maybe wrongly) that because of the US Internet laws he would not be able to help.

    If you could kindly email him any details then I will notify him although I know that he is following this thread.

    Best regards

    Geoff
     
  32. Aug 30, 2005
  33. Annorax

    Annorax Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Poker
    Location:
    Iowa
    Check the article. If Microsoft can get away with retroactive patenting, there's a good chance Geoff can too, especially since he (IMHO, not lawyer, don't rely on my opinion) rightfully should have a patent on that game.
     
  34. Aug 31, 2005
  35. KasinoKing

    KasinoKing WebMeister & Slotaholic.. CAG MM PABnonaccred webmeister

    Occupation:
    House-Husband and Casino Advisor
    Location:
    Bexhill on sea, England
    I didn't bother - it was only $4 lost.
    But having read more of this thread I might just contact them now.
    Mansion are rumoured to have very good CS - so lets see what they say about this 'bug' and their apparent 'stealing' of IP.

    Macgyver, your eyesight is fine - but maybe you need to review how similar poker hands are compared! ;)
     
  36. Aug 31, 2005
  37. Macgyver

    Macgyver Dormant account PABnononaccred

    Occupation:
    Student
    Location:
    North Carolina
    Ask me about blackjack or some bonus-related questions, KK, and I can come up with answers. ;)

    Just never got into the poker craze ...
     
  38. Sep 2, 2005
  39. KasinoKing

    KasinoKing WebMeister & Slotaholic.. CAG MM PABnonaccred webmeister

    Occupation:
    House-Husband and Casino Advisor
    Location:
    Bexhill on sea, England
    I contacted Mansion, and their CS was very quick in responding. :thumbsup:

    They have now pulled this game while they investigate the payout problem with their software.
    (Shame - I like this game!)

    They declined to comment on the 'stealing IP' issue.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2005

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