January 30, 2007

E-Learning Software Patent Challenged

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has announced that it will re-examine a patent held by e-learning software company, Blackboard, in response to a challenge from a free and open software group, Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC).

The patent, called 'Internet-based education support system and method' was granted to Blackboard in November 2006. It permits only the Washington-based company to sell Web-based software that enables teachers and students to interact outside of the classroom. Blackboard had even filed a lawsuit against rival Desire2Learn, which is scheduled to go to trial in about 13 months.

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