Microsoft told to pay $200m for XML patent infringement

A federal jury in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has ordered Microsoft to pay $200 million in damages to Toronto, Canada based software company i4i Ltd, for patent infringement. According to CXO Today the patent centered around Microsoft's customization of XML technology used in Microsoft Word 2003 and Word 2007.

The suit was originally filed in 2007, and the verdict followed an eight-day trial, with Judge Leonard Davis presiding.

According to McKool Smith, the lawyers for i4i, the patent was issued in 1998 as U.S. Patent No. 5,787,499 and covers "software designed to manipulate document architecture and content. The software covered by the patent removed the need for individual, manually embedded command codes to control text formatting in electronic documents."

Microsoft denies any infringement took place and plans to appeal the verdict.

"The evidence clearly demonstrated that we do not infringe and that the i4i patent is invalid," a Microsoft spokesman told Reuters. "We believe this award of damages is legally and factually unsupported, so we will ask the court to overturn the verdict."

In April of this year, Uniloc Inc. was awarded $388 million in damages from Microsoft for patent infringement related to anti-piracy technologies. Microsoft is appealing that verdict as well.

View: XML document modification information on i4i Website
View: US Patent Office information for No. 5,787,499

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18 Comments

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Woohoo.. thanks to Calum, there's no one on this forum defending those that MS may actually have stolen from...

Now that's unprofessional journalism at it's best..

I would love it of all these organisations (such at the EU) sued Microsoft to bankrupcy...what would be do then WHERE IS YOUR WINDOWS SUPPORT NOW?? HAHAHA

/sarcasm

[strike]Although, it may make them switch to open source software as they've been intending to do for...a while now, and apparently getting no where[/strike]

my bad, that was probably some other government-like organisation I'm unfond of... but still, the first point holds!!

EDIT: oops, I was thinking of the British government not the EU...

Xtreme2damax said,
So this was another bogus patent suit by a patent troll and once again took place in Texas?


A Canadian company suing a Washington company in a Texas court. Yup.

Well these patent wars are just a waist. Instead of making things better for consumers fights break out that make products exclusive and cost an arm and a leg. And in the end you got to buy products from 12 different vendors to do the same thing. Its ridiculous. I call for merger of all companies and work together to make soft better.

I swear, Microsoft must have hit at least $1billion in losses by pathetic fines by now... such a waste of money! Its just going to the greedy who aren't using their patents at all...

troist said,
I swear, Microsoft must have hit at least $1billion in losses by pathetic fines by now... such a waste of money! Its just going to the greedy who aren't using their patents at all...

Thats what im saying...such a stupid hassle. People are sue crazy now a days. Hope MS gets out of it, I personally think tiny patent suing is completely useless, make the tiny patent something big and useful THEN you can sue. Otherwise get over it....

i4i? What a brilliant, original name. Thank God Apple started a naming ocnvention that unimaginitive and uncreative companies feel free to borrow.

"The evidence clearly demonstrated that we do not infringe and that the i4i patent is invalid,"
Ok, now pick one. If the patent is invalid then it cannot be infringed upon. Either it is valid and not infringed upon or it was never valid to begin with and no infringement is possible.

Either way, it is unfortunate that Microsoft is forced to waste so much time and money defending themselves against these desperate and lazy cash grabs. Why innovate when you can just point fingers at the deepest pockets and give a court puppy-dog eyes?

C_Guy said,
Either way, it is unfortunate that Microsoft is forced to waste so much time and money defending themselves against these desperate and lazy cash grabs. Why innovate when you can just point fingers at the deepest pockets and give a court puppy-dog eyes?

Indeed.

C_Guy said,
Either way, it is unfortunate that Microsoft is forced to waste so much time and money defending themselves against these desperate and lazy cash grabs. Why innovate when you can just point fingers at the deepest pockets and give a court puppy-dog eyes?

It's not unfortunate at all. Microsoft must "waste" as much money "defending themselves against these desperate and lazy cash grabs" as it does attacking other companies that don't like to cooperate with their terms. Did you noticed the recent case about Microsoft's suit against TomTom, which allegedly infringed 8 of its patents? http://www.computerworlduk.com/toolbox/ope...=1953&blogid=14

So, I really think i4i is a very good name for a company to sue Microsoft.


FTW, STOP software patents, so that we don't have to see news like these every day.

Douglas Cawley, a lawyer for i4i, said Wednesday that e-mails presented during the six-day trial showed that Microsoft was aware of the firm's technology and sought to make it obsolete by including it in its own word processing software.

I4i will now seek an injunction preventing Microsoft from selling those products, Microsoft Word 2003 and 2007. It will also ask the judge for enhanced damages, Mr. Cawley said.


http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-inves...article1145450/