A key hearing in the patent infringement case of Worlds Inc versus Activision Blizzard has been set for June 27, 2013 by U.S. District Judge Denise J Casper.
The suit claims that Blizzard's World of Warcraft game infringes on patents held by Worlds Inc. The hearing that has been set, referred to as a Markman hearing, is the key event in a patent case where the judge issues rulings regarding the language and interpretation of the patents at issue in the case. Worlds Inc's patents, if sustained, would apply to most MMO's on the market.
The Worlds Inc patents in question are U.S. patents numbers 8,082,501, 7,493,558, 7,945,856 and 7,181,690 titled "System and Method for Enabling Users to Interact in a Virtual Space." The patents are based around three-dimensional graphical multi-user interactive virtual world systems; in other words, the core of most MMO's.