Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement

Law360 reports that a trial is underway (on Zoom!) to determine whether Valve infringed on a patent in the design of the Steam Controller (thanks GamesIndustry.biz). According to the attorneys for controller maker SCUF, they warned Valve back in 2014 that the rear-side control surfaces on the Steam Controller prototype used technology that they patented. In response, Valve's lawyer says: "Ironburg's case will be based on altered graphics, modified pictures, and skewed viewing angles ... and then they'll ask you to make that decision based on an altered reality." Here's an outline of the plaintiff's case:
"Valve did know that its conduct involved an unreasonable risk of infringement, but it simply proceeded to infringe anyway — the classic David and Goliath story: Goliath does what Goliath wants to do," Becker said.

In early 2014, shortly after finding out that the patent at the heart of the trial was going to be granted, SCUF CEO Duncan Ironmonger saw Valve's Steam Controller prototype at the premier CES trade show.

Concerned by the Steam Controller's incorporation of rear-side controls, Ironmonger informed Valve staffers at the show about the soon-to-issue patent, and then wrote a letter to Valve that March, explaining Ironburg's belief that the rear controls were an infringement of a patent with which "Ironburg really created a new category of controllers," Becker said.
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28.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Feb 2, 2021, 23:40
28.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Feb 2, 2021, 23:40
Feb 2, 2021, 23:40
 
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Feb 2, 2021, 23:26:
Agent.X7 wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:34:
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:02:
I'd say these patent trolls have no chance, but the article mentions that Microsoft already opted to license the patent from Ironburg. It's a shame Microsoft caved, because it'll be an uphill battle for Valve now.

Of course, "Ironburg/SCUF" doesn't actually make any fucking products, but what are you going to do when they've already won one case against Microsoft?

Incidentally, they stopped selling the Steam controllers? I still use mine occasionally, best PC controller I've had.

2 seconds of Google would tell you they do, in fact, make high end controllers. https://scufgaming.com/

Well look at that, I had never heard of them before. *EDIT* Nevermind, with all the options, it approaches 200 dollars for their controllers. Nope!


Those don't even look that bad.
A maxed out headphone is $172. Biggrin

Maybe they'll offer a discount now that they've made a cool easy $4mil.
Avatar 58135
27.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Feb 2, 2021, 23:26
27.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Feb 2, 2021, 23:26
Feb 2, 2021, 23:26
 
Agent.X7 wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:34:
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:02:
I'd say these patent trolls have no chance, but the article mentions that Microsoft already opted to license the patent from Ironburg. It's a shame Microsoft caved, because it'll be an uphill battle for Valve now.

Of course, "Ironburg/SCUF" doesn't actually make any fucking products, but what are you going to do when they've already won one case against Microsoft?

Incidentally, they stopped selling the Steam controllers? I still use mine occasionally, best PC controller I've had.

2 seconds of Google would tell you they do, in fact, make high end controllers. https://scufgaming.com/

Well look at that, I had never heard of them before. *EDIT* Nevermind, with all the options, it approaches 200 dollars for their controllers. Nope!


Those don't even look that bad.
Avatar 54863
26.
 
removed
Jan 28, 2021, 16:42
26.
removed Jan 28, 2021, 16:42
Jan 28, 2021, 16:42
 
* REMOVED *

This comment was deleted on Jan 28, 2021, 17:15. Reason: Spam (rule 5)
25.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 15:56
25.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 15:56
Jan 28, 2021, 15:56
 
RedEye9 wrote on Jan 28, 2021, 09:40:
I should have patented the cube and rectangle along with the circle and cylinder when I had the chance.

Yup, I got those last year. I'm making bank.
"Even after you've had the COVID-19 vaccine, you still need to wash hands, watch distance and wear a mask because you can still transmit the virus even though you're not going to get sick." - NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins
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24.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 12:32
24.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 12:32
Jan 28, 2021, 12:32
 
El Pit wrote on Jan 28, 2021, 12:13:
James Watt called. He wants to have a word with Valve about that "Steam" thing.

And you clearly have no idea about the difference between patent and trademark law.

This whole thing reminded me of this gem. But don't worry about violating it next time you're at the playground. It expired a few months ago.
23.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 12:13
El Pit
 
23.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 12:13
Jan 28, 2021, 12:13
 El Pit
 
James Watt called. He wants to have a word with Valve about that "Steam" thing.
Also, United Association of Plumbers would like to talk about that "Valve" name...

Poor Gabe. Hidden in Hobbington in New Zealand, he cannot save his company now. Too bad.
"There is no right life in the wrong one." (Theodor W. Adorno, philosopher)
"Only a Sith deals in absolutes." (Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi)
22.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 09:40
22.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 09:40
Jan 28, 2021, 09:40
 
I should have patented the cube and rectangle along with the circle and cylinder when I had the chance.
Avatar 58135
21.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 08:34
21.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 08:34
Jan 28, 2021, 08:34
 
The patent office is out of control. They issue patents like candy. They completely ignore prior tech. Like they cannot be bothered to research anything. The best thing to do is fire the entire staff and start anew as the current staff would not know a legitimate patent if it hit them in the face.

Of course, these people are patent trolls, they applied for a patent where there is lots of prior tech and knew for a fact what they were doing was making money off the patent. Pathetic company!!!!
20.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 06:51
20.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 06:51
Jan 28, 2021, 06:51
 
I did not realize the patent system has degenerated so badly. Now they issue patents for adding push buttons to anything? Idiocracy.
"Meet the new Boss, same as the old Boss." - The Who.
Avatar 57379
19.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 28, 2021, 05:10
19.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 28, 2021, 05:10
Jan 28, 2021, 05:10
 
Simon Says wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 19:46:
Patent trolls strike again.
Given that these guys actually make a product (see earlier in the thread), they're not patent trolls.

Patent trolling is when you register a patent and don't actively use it in the hopes of extorting royalties from others without any further effort on your part.

The patent they have may be dubious, but that's not patent trolling. That's just USPTO being shitty, trying to shift the burden of examining the validity of patents to the courts instead of doing their job.
18.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 19:46
18.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 19:46
Jan 27, 2021, 19:46
 
Patent trolls strike again.
17.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 19:18
RaZ0r!
 
17.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 19:18
Jan 27, 2021, 19:18
 RaZ0r!
 
I guess I shouldn't have tossed my two Steam Controllers and two Steam Links in the trash.
I pwnz j00!
Avatar 8127
16.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 19:03
16.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 19:03
Jan 27, 2021, 19:03
 
Dev wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 18:39:
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:02:
Incidentally, they stopped selling the Steam controllers? I still use mine occasionally, best PC controller I've had.
Yeah and they blew the remainder out at a good sale, which is why I picked up a second one. Either as a spare 10 years from now, or for 2 player.
Blues announced this I'm pretty sure when it happened, wasn't that long ago, maybe 6 months?
It was a little over a year ago. https://www.bluesnews.com/s/205984/rip-steam-controller
I bought one,
it is bnib. also same for a steam link
If anyone needs one it can be had for only $60 continental US, shipping included.
hmm
I just saw what these are going for, gotta rethink my pricing.
Avatar 58135
15.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 18:39
Dev
15.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 18:39
Jan 27, 2021, 18:39
Dev
 
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:02:
Incidentally, they stopped selling the Steam controllers? I still use mine occasionally, best PC controller I've had.
Yeah and they blew the remainder out at a good sale, which is why I picked up a second one. Either as a spare 10 years from now, or for 2 player.
Blues announced this I'm pretty sure when it happened, wasn't that long ago, maybe 6 months?

Rilcon wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 18:32:
The patent itself says "An improved controller for a game console".

Last I checked the Steam controller doesn't work on any consoles, so...
I mean... you could argue the linux steambox is one.
14.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 18:32
Rilcon
 
14.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 18:32
Jan 27, 2021, 18:32
 Rilcon
 
eRe4s3r wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 18:24:
Bodolza wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 13:13:
The patent in question, which truely is as dumb as it sounds. God, the US patent system is broken.

It's even more broken considering the patent doesn't even apply to the controller.. I have one next to me. Back buttons are part of the battery cover. This patent has ZERO relevance to this controller.

The patent itself says "An improved controller for a game console".

Last I checked the Steam controller doesn't work on any consoles, so...
13.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 18:24
13.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 18:24
Jan 27, 2021, 18:24
 
Bodolza wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 13:13:
The patent in question, which truely is as dumb as it sounds. God, the US patent system is broken.

It's even more broken considering the patent doesn't even apply to the controller.. I have one next to me. Back buttons are part of the battery cover. This patent has ZERO relevance to this controller.
Avatar 54727
12.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 16:53
12.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 16:53
Jan 27, 2021, 16:53
 
Bodolza wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 16:06:
Cutter wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 13:28:
that's not going to change anytime soon with corporatists like Biden and Harris

Far more likely than the "let's sacrifice the old people so companies can keep making money" Republicans. After all, it was Obama that enacted the last patent reform act that made it easier to challenge existing patents.

Barry was a lot more progressive than Joe. That wasn't a shot at all Dems, just the corporatist Dems, of which there are still far too many. Stating the GOP is evil is just trafficking in the obvious.
"You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life."
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11.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 16:33
11.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 16:33
Jan 27, 2021, 16:33
 
I guess GabeN is going to need a bucket so he can scoop a bit of cash out of the pool to defend Valve.
"Even after you've had the COVID-19 vaccine, you still need to wash hands, watch distance and wear a mask because you can still transmit the virus even though you're not going to get sick." - NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins
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10.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 16:06
10.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 16:06
Jan 27, 2021, 16:06
 
Cutter wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 13:28:
that's not going to change anytime soon with corporatists like Biden and Harris

Far more likely than the "let's sacrifice the old people so companies can keep making money" Republicans. After all, it was Obama that enacted the last patent reform act that made it easier to challenge existing patents.
9.
 
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement
Jan 27, 2021, 14:34
9.
Re: Valve Sued for Steam Controller Infringement Jan 27, 2021, 14:34
Jan 27, 2021, 14:34
 
MoreLuckThanSkill wrote on Jan 27, 2021, 14:02:
I'd say these patent trolls have no chance, but the article mentions that Microsoft already opted to license the patent from Ironburg. It's a shame Microsoft caved, because it'll be an uphill battle for Valve now.

Of course, "Ironburg/SCUF" doesn't actually make any fucking products, but what are you going to do when they've already won one case against Microsoft?

Incidentally, they stopped selling the Steam controllers? I still use mine occasionally, best PC controller I've had.

2 seconds of Google would tell you they do, in fact, make high end controllers. https://scufgaming.com/
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