Bodog Regains Control of Bodog.com After Legal Battle



In breaking news, Bodog has assumed ownership of its original domain name, Bodog.com. The change came as a result of the popular online sports book, casino, and poker room settling a patent infringement lawsuit with 1st Technology, LLC.

At the time of writing, Bodog.com and BodogLife.com continue to operate as independent domain names; one does not forward to the other. According to a press release distributed by Morris Mohawk, which owns the rights to market Bodog in North America, “This settlement ends the series of 1st Technology’s lawsuits addressing the alleged use of patents in the 1st Technology portfolio. The settlement also resolves 1st Technology’s judgment collection efforts.” Patents for what the press release calls “advanced media products” are included in the settlement and deal with transmission of data through mediums such as telephones, WiFi, and cable.

Bodog lost its domain as part of the patent infringement lawsuit back in 2007. As a result, it quickly scrambled to move its operations to an alternate domain. Alwyn Morris, who heads the Morris Mohawk Gaming Group, was looking forward to moving on to business as usual after the settlement: “We are pleased to have worked constructively with 1st Technology and its principals to bring an end to this protracted dispute. This resolution will provide certainty and will also allow us to continue to enhance our technology base for online gaming in order to provide our users with unfettered access to the best technology.”

The arrangement between Bodog and Morris Mohawk for North American marketing rights was forged in September of 2007. One month earlier, Bodog found itself on the losing end of a $48 million default judgment. Bodog promptly launched newbodog.com, which ultimately led to bodoglife.com. Interestingly enough, in an ongoing case involving the seizure and potential forfeiture of 141 internet gambling domain names in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, bodoglife.com is specifically listed, but bodog.com is not. There has been no indication as to whether bodog.com will replace bodoglife.com in the suit, which may head to the Kentucky Supreme Court.

In an article that appeared in the Vancouver Sun newspaper in August of 2007, patents that were violated included “software used by Bodog customers to facilitate its gaming activities.” Bodog did not respond to 1st Technology initially, leading to the multi-million dollar default judgment. Speculating as to why the online poker site chose to ignore 1st Technology’s threats, the newspaper commented, “One possibility is they were scared away by the U.S. Department of Justice, which has declared war on Internet gambling.” Last April, Bodog founder Calvin Ayre left the company to pursue work with his Antigua-based Foundation. The billionaire currently resides in the Caribbean island nation.

Dr. Scott Lewis heads 1st Technology, which is based in Las Vegas. He’s a leading expert in multimedia technology and holds a doctorate degree from Oxford. He also received a Master of Business Administration from Harvard, one of the top business programs in the world. He commented on Monday night, “We are pleased to have finally resolved this dispute and applaud Mr. Morris for his proactive and constructive approach.” Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. However, the squabble between 1st Technology and Bodog appears to have been resolved permanently.

Customers are able to log into the online poker site as normal on Monday night; no additional downloads are required. The news comes less than one week removed from the start of the third Bodog Poker Open, which kicks off on April 26th. The festivities consist of three separate tournament series comprising a total of 26 events, which vary daily by series and include money added tournaments as well as those boasting guaranteed prize pools.

Bodog happily accepts customers from the United States. The independent site is the 15th largest worldwide in terms of cash game traffic with a seven day running average of 700 players, according to PokerScout.com. It is the fifth largest to accept U.S. poker enthusiasts, trailing only PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, CEREUS, and the Cake Poker Network.

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