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Judge: Microsoft Can't Sell Word in the U.S.

The verdict comes a few months after Microsoft was ordered to pay Toronto-based i4i $200 million for infringing upon a patent awarded to the company in 1998. U.S. Patent No. 5,787,499 covers software designed to manipulate "document architecture and content." Attorneys at McKool Smith, the firm representing i4i, explained that the software covered by the patent removed the need for individual, manually embedded command codes to control text formatting in electronic documents.

McKool Smith yesterday announced that Judge Leonard Davis, of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, had ordered a permanent injunction that "prohibits Microsoft from selling or importing to the United States any Microsoft Word products that have the capability of opening .XML, .DOCX or DOCM files (XML files) containing custom XML."

Judge Davis also enhanced the damages awarded in May, tacking on an additional $40 million for willful infringement, $37 million in prejudgment interest, including an additional $21,102 per day until a final judgment is reached in the case and $144,060 per day until the date of final judgment for post-verdict damages.

Microsoft has 60 days to comply with the ruling, and the Redmond-based company has already said it will appeal the verdict.

  • thejerk
    LOL
    Reply
  • jediagh
    So the priates of Xerox finally get caught?
    Reply
  • scook9
    Suckage. Glad I already own a couple copies...

    this is why you have to do your homework MS.....
    Reply
  • jsloan
    wow, we have one f*cked up patent system...
    Reply
  • Jerky_san
    so if i'm reading this right having XML tags in a doc is patent infringement? Also looks like MS will be giving away another piece of software..
    Reply
  • Shadow703793
    jsloanwow, we have one f*cked up patent system...+1. Well said.
    Reply
  • HolyCrusader
    O.k. I'm not a legal expert by any stretch of the imagination, and these questions come to mind: What does this do for people that need to buy Word - I have a customer that was about to buy Word (her newspaper requires the newest version)... will she still be able to buy it now?

    Also, what does this mean to those 3rd-party applications that offers Word compatibility, like Open Office, or some Palm applications?
    Reply
  • jerther
    HAHAHA!! Now i'm starting to really understand why the nu/Linux community don't believe in patents :D

    Do you think open office will benifit from this?
    Reply
  • "the software covered by the patent removed the need for individual, manually embedded command codes to control text formatting in electronic documents."
    what?? and the patent is in 1998? when was the last time we use ctrl+K+D to modify text?
    Reply
  • LOL MS just got bitched
    Reply