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High Court Rejects FTC Appeal in Rambus Case

(CN) - The U.S. Supreme Court rejected on Monday the Federal Trade Commission's bid to revive an antitrust action accusing Rambus of hiding its patent interests in technology used to set industry standards for computer-memory technology.

In 1990 Rambus' founders patented a faster architecture for dynamic random access memory, or DRAM. The company said the patent covered at least four technological advances that a private standard-setting organization included in DRAM industry standards.

The FTC found that Rambus had intentionally hid its interest in the patents during the standard-setting process, in violation of the Sherman Act and the Federal Trade Commission Act, either to acquire a monopoly through the standardization of its patented technology or to avoid paying patent-licensing fees.

The D.C. Circuit overturned the FTC's decision last April, saying Rambus' technology likely would have been standardized "even if Rambus had disclosed its intellectual property" (emphasis in original).

The Supreme Court turned down the FTC's appeal without comment.

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