Design Patents and Online Booksellers Layout and design are important in sales documents, and many..

Design Patents and Online Booksellers

Layout and design are important in sales documents, and many
companies believe that an effectively designed website equates to increased
sales. In fact, some online retailers have patented some of their website
design features to keep rival companies from employing similar features. In
1999 Amazon.com filed suit against Barnesandnoble.com, claiming it had copied
parts of the Amazon.com web page design, including Amazons patented 1-Click
purchase feature. The 1-Click design allows customers to skip several steps in
the checkout process by presetting

Design Patents and Online Booksellers

Layout and design are important in sales documents, and many
companies believe that an effectively designed website equates to increased
sales. In fact, some online retailers have patented some of their website
design features to keep rival companies from employing similar features. In
1999 Amazon.com filed suit against Barnesandnoble.com, claiming it had copied
parts of the Amazon.com web page design, including Amazons patented 1-Click
purchase feature. The 1-Click design allows customers to skip several steps in
the checkout process by presetting credit card and shipping information, and
Amazon claimed that Barnes and Nobles Express Checkout design was a patent
violation. According to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, We spent thousands of hours to
develop our 1-Click process, and the reason we have a patent system in this
country is to encourage people to take these kinds of risks and make these
kinds of investments for customers. The infringement suit led to an eventual
closed settlement between the two retailers in 2002. Although the details of
the settlement have never been released, Barnesandnoble.com no longer uses the
Express Checkout feature on its website.

Examine the Amazon.com and the Barnesandnoble.com websites.
Do you feel that the 1-Click design gives Amazon an advantage over Barnes and
Noble? Do you see other design similarities between the two websites? Do you
believe that Barnes and Nobles Express Checkout system was a violation of
Amazons patented design? Of course, when writers borrow content from other
documents without permission, we call this plagiarism, but does borrowing
design features also constitute plagiarism? In a short letter to your instructor,
detail what you would consider an ethical approach to borrowing design
strategies from other documents, using these two online retailers as a point of
reference.

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