November 4, 2004 9:43 AM PST

Cendant sues Amazon over book recommendations

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Cendant Publishing has filed a lawsuit against Amazon.com, alleging patent infringement.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Wilmington, Del., claims that the online giant infringed on Cendant's "370 patent" for providing people with recommendations of goods or services to purchase based on a database of previous purchasing histories of other customers. The suit was filed Oct. 29.

"Amazon's online marketplace uses numerous features which recommend other goods to potential customers based on prior customer purchasing history," the lawsuit states. "Amazon's recommendation features, (including) 'Customers who bought this book also bought' infringe one or more claims of the 370 patent."

A Cendant representative had no comment when reached Thursday. Amazon representatives were not immediately available for comment.

Although Cendant declined to comment, a source familiar with the suit said the company is "merely protecting its patent. Amazon has been afforded every opportunity to sign a license agreement with Cendant...but they have failed to do so."

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