In an 111 page complaint, BT claims it has had a number of goes at speaking to Steam about the alleged infringements, but the firm has declined to respond. We guess it was ringing the customer support line.
BT's complaint, which can be found here is over US Patent No. 6,578,079 (entitled “Communications Node for Providing Network Based Information Service”) (the “Gittins” Patent), US Patent No. 6,334,142 (entitled “Method For Automatic And Periodic Requests For Messages To An E-mail Server From The Client ”) (the “Newton” Patent), US Patent No. 6,694,375 (entitled “Communications Network And Method Having Accessible Directory Of User Profile Data”) (the “Beddus” Patent), and US Patent No. 7,167,142 (entitled “Multi-user Display System”) (the “Buckley” Patent) (collectively, the “Patents-In-Suit”).
The complaint said that the patents, named as Newton, Gittins, Beddus and Buckley, cover the periodic automatic sending of emails, which apparently BT invented.
"BT brings this action to recover the just compensation it is owed for Valve's past infringement, and to prevent Valve from continuing to benefit from the patented inventions in the future without authorisation or compensation to BT," said BT.
This will run for a long time we expect.