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Until recently, a patent plaintiff had its choice of bringing suit in any forum in which an accused product was sold—in practice, usually any court in the country. In addition, in the Eastern District of Texas, plaintiffs could typically join as many defendants as they cared to sue under the same set of patents in a single suit. One result was  large multi-defendant patent suits in venues such as the Eastern District of Texas, in which a large number of unrelated companies found themselves together in a single patent suit.

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