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Gobi vs Whitson Metalworks on a Patent

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#1 MightyP


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Posted 22 August 2015 - 10:26 AM

Gobi (as Independent Design 2000 or something like that) filed a lawsuit against WM for patent infringement. The 4runner forum is like most and has a lot of emotional and political BS without much actual experience or real knowledge. There are a few people who took the time to look up the actual patents and lawsuit, but both are so mired in legal-speak they're very difficult to understand. I was wondering if any of you had heard of the topic since many here are into overlanding and Gobi is a huge provider of roof racks.


From what it sounds like, Gobi managed to get any vehicle specific roof rack patented, so, even though the racks are different, Baja, Eezi-Awn, WM and any others who make a rack that fits only one vehicle are in violation. If it's true, I applaud the skill of their attorney for pulling that off, but it seems like that shouldn't be patent-able. 




What I lack in knowledge & skill, I make up for with sarcasm & bad jokes.

#2 Feeny



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Posted 22 August 2015 - 10:56 AM

This is the first I have heard of this but it sounds interesting.


After a couple minutes of searching around it seems that this is another case of the broken patent system we have. It is unclear why exactly Gobi is suing but it is over these two patents. Both of which look very generic and are design patents which is again a very generic term.


​"Sport Utility Vehicle Rack" -2008

"Multi-purpose Storage Rack for a Sport Utility Vehicle" -2008



Looking at the other patents owned by Gobi (or Intelligent Designs 2000) it seems they have a handful of the same stuff, generic car design patents.


I have seen this a few time recently in the craft beer scene where a larger company feels that they have to sue a smaller company to protect their patents. It really is a symptom of the current patent system we have.



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