One of our clients received a complaint regarding the use of a interactive map. In this case Google maps with a markers overlay showing store locations. The patent https://data.epo.org/gpi/EP2336970B1-Interactive-electronically-presented-map seems to have a very broad definition of map interaction.

We did a rough investigative lookup for cases regarding this patent or mentions of this patent and it's implications on interactive maps on websites but without conclusive results. We expected more impact and discussions as a lot of websites use visualization of data using a map-tile provider combined with a data-layer.

We are wondering if anyone has come in contact with this patent before or is aware of any legal issues regarding this specific patent as it possibly has implications on a lot of our clients.

For extra information this is the document defining this patent: https://worldwide.espacenet.com/publicationDetails/originalDocument?CC=EP&NR=2336970B1&KC=B1&FT=D&ND=&date=20160427&DB=&locale=en_EP#

Ps. original question posted here https://stackoverflow.com/questions/50351100/patent-2336970-interactive-electronically-presented-map

Update 2019/04/25 Somehow after a while they stopped harassing our client. We got to the point in which Google was, behind the screens, assisting us with proof of prior use etc but we never had to play this card. So for who gets into the same situation. Hang on, resist. They probably know they do not really have a solid case.

  • Looks like your client is about to be the victim of a patent troll. – Ron Beyer May 15 '18 at 14:54
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    ... in which case it might be wise to get Google Legal involved in this. These patent trolls go after the small businesses. Getting a large company involved can be an effective counter-tactic. The troll's worst-case scenario is that their patent is revoked, and an experienced legal department knows how to do that. – MSalters May 15 '18 at 15:58
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    That particular patent has some of the longest claims I have ever seen. Non-intuitively, long claims are actually weaker since you only need to circumvent a single aspect of a claim to avoid infringement. In any case, you should consult with an actual patent attorney. Please note there are other patents related to this by the same company. – Eric S May 16 '18 at 23:07
  • "One of our clients received a complaint" -> attorney – DonQuiKong May 17 '18 at 6:03
  • Thanks for your feedback. Will advise our client to either remove the maps or fight this claim with an attorney as this is not something we can assist them with. – Remko May 17 '18 at 8:03

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