In November, Microsoft and Motorola (now owned by Google) made their cases in a Seattle-based US federal court in their long running patent battle. Even though the trial was held in a public court, US District Judge James Robart granted the two companies' requests to clear the court room if certain topics were brought up that Microsoft and Motorola wanted to keep secret.
The whole thing started in 2010, when Microsoft filed its lawsuit against Motorola. It claimed Motorola was not offering its essential patents for 802.11 wireless and H.264 video standards under "fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms", otherwise known as FRAND.
Now that Judge Robart has heard the arguments in court, Microsoft and Motorola still want him to keep certain things in the case out of the public record. Reuters reports the two companies filed their request to seal some of their post-trial submissions late on Friday.
Some of the things they want to keep quiet include the specific financial terms of Motorola's licenses as well as some future product and marketing plans that Microsoft doesn't want to reveal yet. Motorola also wants to keep secret the details of any settlement meetings it has held with Microsoft in the past.
The two companies said:
For the same compelling reasons that the court sealed this evidence for purposes of trial, it would be consistent and appropriate to take the same approach in connection with the parties' post-trial submissions.
Since Judge Robart cleared the court room at times in November, it's more than likely he will also agree to keep elements of the post-trial documents under seal as well. However, he is not expected to give his final decision on this case until sometime in 2013.