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Microsoft Appeals Word XML Patent Ruling

Aside from the injunction against selling Microsoft Word in the U.S., the Redmond-based company was also told to pay i4i $290 million in damages. Microsoft said it would appeal the ruling and this week we learn that the company has done just that.

Microsoft has filed an emergency motion to block the injunction saying it causes irreparable harm to the company.

 "Even if Microsoft ultimately succeeds on appeal, it will never be able to recoup the funds expended in redesigning and redistributing Word, the sales lost during the period when Word and Office are barred from the market, and the diminished goodwill from Microsoft's many retail and industrial customers."

However, while it all sounds very desperate, a Microsoft spokesperson spoke to PC Pro and said that it was all par for the course. "These filings are not unusual in patent cases," the spokesperson said. "We believe the evidence clearly demonstrates that we do not infringe and that the i4i patent is invalid."

As it stands, Microsoft is not allowed to sell or import any Microsoft Word products that have the capability of opening .XML, .DOCX or .DOCM files containing custom XML, in the United States.

  • ubernoobie
    Wow microsoft is getting fined so much this year
    Reply
  • wujonesj2
    I think Microsoft has done a fine enough job of "diminishing goodwill" on their own. Although I'll agree that the patent system, as it applies to the software industry, is flawed - Bad business tactics are bad business tactics. Whether the patent is legitimate or not, meeting with the product creators and sending corporate emails dismissing their claims by stating that they would make them "obsolete" is a clear indication that they are aware of the problem and are willing to play dirty. Behavior like this is not in the best interests of the market and, as such, Microsoft should be fiscally reprimanded for acting so unethically. Maybe they would give second thought to this activity if they seriously feared injunctions like this.
    Reply
  • hellwig
    Unfortunately, Word is too bloated and slow, err..., I mean big to fail. The freakin U.S. government standardized on it for christ sakes. Yes, the government recently moved to accepting only open standards (for documents), but guess what, those open standards (utilizing XML) are at the basis of this patent dispute, and the government STILL uses Word (thanks to Microsofts crappy OOXML). While I would love to see Microsoft and Word knocked off their perch, sadly the government itself can't afford to let that happen.
    Reply
  • scuba dave
    "We believe the evidence clearly demonstrates that we do not infringe and that the i4i patent is invalid."

    Interesting. Not, "No, our product doesn't violate the patent" or "No, the patent says (A) and our product does (B). But instead.. just.. "Invalid" Are they gonna try to take the patent out from under i4i or something? It's gonna be fun watching MSFT squirm their way out of this one.(which they will unfortunately)

    Sure does pay to have a legal monopoly AND the best lawyers money can buy. >.>
    Reply
  • IzzyCraft
    Word is bloated? Well frankly i like spell/grammar/dictionary etc in my word system maybe not on my netbook, but my workstation has plenty of power to run simple word program.
    Reply
  • falconqc
    Hey microsoft, I have an idea for you. Sell good old fashionned word with standard .docs, and just give out FREE patches to read .docx, .docm and .xml. Not allowed to sell, but you can still give it away ;)
    Reply
  • AMDnoob
    Microsoft Word 2003 FTW! I like using '03 it doesnt have tht ribbon UI (which i can see it's promise, but personally I just dont like the ribbon a whole lot) and it's relatively streamlined and does what I want it to do.
    Reply
  • SAL-e
    falconqcHey microsoft, I have an idea for you. Sell good old fashionned word with standard .docs, and just give out FREE patches to read .docx, .docm and .xml. Not allowed to sell, but you can still give it awayHaha... tanks to the RIAA's lawyers giving it for free is treated as "sell" for $0. There is high court ruling for that.
    Reply
  • ethanolson
    Correction to the article. They have 60-days from when the judge threw down the gavel to stop selling or importing Word that supports those particular file formats. What about Windows 7 at large, which includes Wordpad? Wordpad can now work with those files.
    Reply
  • ethanolson
    SAL-eHaha... tanks to the RIAA's lawyers giving it for free is treated as "sell" for $0. There is high court ruling for that.
    I'd be more included to think that giving something away for free on the internet would be considered a mechanism for theft. If I put something on display and somebody takes it, isn't that theft? I guess if I intended them to have it, it might be considered a gift on will call. This sales for $0.00 is garbage.
    Reply