December 3, 2004, 12:00 AM

Suit claiming Amazon infringed on personalization patents to start Monday

A lawsuit claiming that Amazon.com Inc. and six other retailers infringed patents for personalization technology is scheduled for trial Monday in Chicago. The plaintiff is Pinpoint Inc., a Fort Worth, TX, company that holds the patents.

A lawsuit claiming that Amazon.com Inc. and six other retailers infringed patents for personalization technology is scheduled for trial Monday in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago. The plaintiff is Pinpoint Inc., a Fort Worth, TX, company that holds the patents.

Other retailers named in the suit are Target Corp., Toys R Us Inc., Borders Group Inc., Egghead.com Inc., Bertlemann AG’s CDNow.com and U.K.-based Virgin Group Ltd.

Like other online retailers, Amazon uses personalization technology to present shoppers with merchandising displays and messages based on previous purchases.

Pinpoint acquired the patents from computer scientists, one of whom, Fred Herz, is a shareholder in Pinpoint. Daniel Henderson, Pinpoint president, says he has helped collect $70 million in damages from telecommunications companies in connection with lawsuits over alleged infringement on patents held by the late Kazuo Hashimoto, an inventor of telephone answering equipment.

An Amazon spokesperson says the company does not comment on matters under litigation.

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