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MS Dubs Word Injunction "Miscarriage of Justice"

Microsoft's lawyers have appealed the ruling that granted Toronto-based i4i $290 million in damages and placed a permanent injunction on the sale of Word in the U.S. The company was granted a fast track appeal for the injunction, which it last week said would cause irreparable damage to the company. Microsoft Wednesday appealed to a panel of three judges, calling the ruling a "miscarriage of injustice."

ComputerWorld cites Microsoft's appeal brief as criticizing Judge Leonard Davis' handling of the case. The Redmond-based company went on to say that the court should have recognized "a trial run amok."

This case stands as a stark example of what can happen in a patent case when a judge abdicates [his] gatekeeping functions," Microsoft said. "If the district court had been more faithful to its role as gatekeeper, it should have recognized a trial run amok and interceded to prevent a miscarriage of justice."

ComputerWord reported earlier this week that following the filing of Microsoft's appeal brief, a response from i4i is due in two weeks time, on September 8, while Microsoft's reply to that must reach the court by noon on September 14. The oral hearing is set for September 23.

  • puddleglum
    Wouldn't be such a big deal if everyone weren't dependent on a product from one vendor.
    Reply
  • falconqc
    I wonder, why is i4i not suing the creators of Open Office? As I recall, Open Office has XML support and the ability to read/write .docx files.
    Reply
  • There used to be quality control for issuing patents 100 years ago. Now they give one to anybody who's willing to pay.
    Reply
  • Pei-chen
    puddleglumWouldn't be such a big deal if everyone weren't dependent on a product from one vendor.You can use the crap know as OpenOffice
    Reply
  • geoffs
    falconqcI wonder, why is i4i not suing the creators of Open Office? As I recall, Open Office has XML support and the ability to read/write .docx files.Maybe because there is no money to be made from doing so? Go ahead, get an injunction forcing them to stop giving away Open Office for free. If they prevail over MS, and if OO infringes the same patents, then the probably will sue, but in IP suits, you always pick one of two groups for your initial suit(s):

    1. Go after someone with money and a lot to lose. Pro, big potential settlement, chance that they will simply pay a license fee rather than risk a court battle. Con, they've got a lot to lose, they're likely to fight if they think the licensing fee will cost more than the court battle.

    2. Go after a small company who can't afford a big court battle and is likely to sign a license agreement. Pro, getting someone to license your patent implies the patent is valid, and may provide some additional working cash. If the alleged infringer fights you in court and loses, you have precedent indicating the patent is enforceable. Con, there isn't much chance of getting much money. The only reasons to pursue this first is to strengthen the apparent validity of a patent. That may help lower costs and/or speed up later cases against larger infringers.
    Reply
  • Hanin33
    this is only an injustice for microsoft in that they're finally be held as an infringer and are unable to pay their way out... if it were them on the other side they would do everything possible to sink the opposing company...

    in this case, we've heard evidence that microsoft knew in advance of this 'patent' and tried to sneak around it. case closed, pay up or stop making your infringing product.
    Reply
  • hemelskonijn
    falconqc :
    I wonder, why is i4i not suing the creators of Open Office? As I recall, Open Office has XML support and the ability to read/write .docx files.

    Because microsoft was interested in the past in buying a license and chose to go rouge.According to i4i the patent has no hold on the implementation used in OOo but might possible be violated by lotus however they stated that they see no point in hunting them down.

    This is a healthy attitude since the reason for suing microsoft is based on both using patented stuff and because microsoft pulled back out of a deal to be able to use it years ago. (twice the screw)
    Reply
  • Major7up
    falconqcI wonder, why is i4i not suing the creators of Open Office? As I recall, Open Office has XML support and the ability to read/write .docx files.They won't get much from such an action seeing how Open Office is not sold.
    Reply
  • agentjon
    I hope they get this resolved soon. I need Word for 20 new employees.
    Reply
  • Yoder54
    There is always WordPerfect.

    Funny how MS almost drove WP into extinction, and now they will be the first to profit from MS's dubious business practices.
    Reply