Many claims in Sendori’s patent applications are denied.
Sendori, a domain name advertising service acquired by IAC in January, has hit some major roadblocks on patents it filed.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has sent a final notice of rejection (pdf) on a number of claims in Sendori’s application for “Domain Name Marketplace”, publication number 20080189192. It has also rejected a few of the claims in “Electronic Marketplace Used to Lease Domain Names and Redirect Web Surfers from Leased Domain Names”, publication number 20070260518.
Sendori provides a marketplace where advertisers can bid on redirects from domain names. For example, an advertiser that operates a video game store online could buy redirects from VideoGames.com.
The major issue Sendori is hitting is that the basic concept of its business was the same as a shuttered Advertising.com service called VisitorBid. When Sendori had its coming out party several years ago, I remember asking Sendori founder Ofer Ronen how his service was different from the one Advertising.com shuttered. He explained that it integrated better with domain owners’ portfolios (e.g., offering an API). That was probably the case, but trying to patent all aspects of the service should certainly be met with resistance.
Sendori still has a chance to reply to the final rejection.