CONNECTICUT: Sony Pictures Entertainment had an incredible 2002. This year could be a touch different if USA Video Interactive (USVO) has its way.
USVO's subsidiary USA Video Technology Corporation has filed a suit against internet movie service provider (ISP) Movielink regarding the rights to the technology that can deliver movies over the Internet. In India of course we are still some way off from this becoming a reality due to broadband constraints.
The suit identifies Warner Brothers, Paramount Pictures Corporation, Metro Goldwyn-Mayer, Universal Studios, and Sony Pictures Entertainment as members of the limited liability company that owns and operates Movielink and the www.movielink.com website service. Movies made by these studios -- including the Oscar nominated My Big Fat Greek Wedding, The Bourne Identity are presently available for download on a fee basis from the movielink.com site. The complaint states that rights to the technology being used by the studios on the site belong to USA Video Technology.
USVO president Edwin Molina has been quoted in an official release saying that the patented technologies represent an advance in home movie entertainment. The days of video rental stores could be fast numbered as it is possible for Internet users to secure almost any movie, any time, from any location with online access all from their comfort of their homes.
The plaintiff is asking the Delaware federal court for a declaratory judgment of both infringement and willful infringement, permanent injunctive relief, compensatory and treble damages, interest, legal costs, as well as a jury trial on all appropriate issues.
An unfavourable verdict against the studios could affect millions of movie fans across the globe. The suit alleges that Movielink has infringed and continues to infringe on the patented online movie delivery system.
USA Video Technology Corporation is a developer, supplier and owner of the patent-in-suit that covers media delivery services that allow Internet users to request and receive digitised movies online.