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NBA WINS LEGAL BATTLE WITH MOTOROLA OVER SPORTSTRAX PAGER
Published July 23, 1996
The NBA won its lawsuit with Motorola, Inc. with a judge ruling the electronics company "engaged in unlawful conduct" with its pager-like device that gives action of games, called SportsTrax. Judge Loretta Preska, in her decision in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, said Motorola must stop using SportsTrax. The lawsuit "alleged the service isn't licensed or authorized by the league." The NBA "sought and was granted a permanent injunction" against Motorola and Skokie, IL-based Stats Inc., the company that assembles the information. However, "unspecified damages and other claims of relief were denied" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 7/23). Motorola claimed SportsTrax was "simply another version of the evening news," but Preska called that "utterly unpersuasive" (RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH, 7/23). In Newark, Dan Wasserman notes, "The ruling clears the way for the NBA to pursue negotiations with ESPN and Time Warner about licensing an official sports beeper." It also jeopardizes the status of SportsTrax covering football and baseball. MLB and the NFL have also threatened suit against STATS and Motorola (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 7/23).