Computerworld - Microsoft Corp.warned last week that an injunction preventing it from selling Word in the U.S. after Oct. 10 would cause "massive disruptions" to sales of its Office software, as well as to key partners like Best Buy Co., Dell Inc. and Hewlett-Packard Co.
A week earlier, U.S. District Court Judge Leonard Davis had issued the injunction and ordered that Microsoft pay $290 million in damages and interest to Toronto-based i4i Inc. for infringing on that company's patent for a document system that uses XML custom formatting.
The i4i technology allows users of Word 2003, Word 2007 and Word for Mac 2008 to create custom XML documents.
In its emergency motion filed Aug. 18 with the U.S. Court of Appeals, Microsoft warned of the business disruption and asked that the injunction be stayed during the appeal.
"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," Microsoft argued.
The company also said that an injunction would "inflict irreparable harm on Microsoft by potentially keeping the centerpiece of its product line (Office) out of the market for months."
Barry Negrin, a partner at New York law firm Pryor Cashman LLP who has practiced patent and trademark law for 17 years, said that Davis' conclusion that Microsoft willfully infringed on the i4i patent will probably hurt the company's chances for an injunction.
In a 65-page summary opinion, Davis said that Microsoft knew of the patent held by i4i as early as 2001 but nevertheless set out to make the Canadian developer's software "obsolete" by adding a custom XML feature to Word.
Negrin also contended that Microsoft could use an "easy technical work-around" to sidestep the injunction.
"All Microsoft has to do is disable the custom XML feature, which should be pretty easy to do, then give that a different SKU number from what's been sold, so it's easy to distinguish the two versions," he said.
Microsoft requested that the court order i4i to respond to its motion by Aug. 24, and it promised to reply to any i4i response by Aug. 28.
This version of the story originally appeared in Computerworld's print edition.
Read more about Government IT in Computerworld's Government IT Topic Center.
This pilot fish is a contractor at a military base, working on some very cool fire-control systems for tanks. But when he spots something obviously wrong during a live-fire test, he can't get the firing-range commander's attention.
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Reduce federal infrastructure risk with compliance management and situational awareness
- IBM continuous monitoring and management solutions deliver real-time situational awareness to help federal agencies understand vulnerabilities, and protect the infrastructure.
- Improving IT Efficiencies: Four Advantages of Multi-Tenant Data Centers
- Increasing demands on IT are forcing organizations to rethink their data center options. For many organizations, that means turning to the flexibility afforded...
- Accelerating Cloud Deployment and Operations with Managed Services
- Companies that do not have sufficient in-house expertise to either deploy or maintain an IaaS cloud should turn to Managed Service Providers .
- Rethinking IT Operations in the Cloud
- This paper breaks down the challenges that often prevent the cloud from delivering the fast, flexible and affordable infrastructure companies seek - and...
- Gartner Magic Quadrant for Cloud-Enabled Managed Hosting, North America
- Cloud-enabled managed hosting brings cloudlike consumption and provisioning attributes to the traditional managed hosting market All Government IT White Papers
- NSS Labs & Cisco Present: Evaluating Leading Breach Detection Systems Today's constantly evolving advanced malware and APTs can evade point-in-time defenses to penetrate networks. Security professionals must evolve their strategy in lockstep to...
- Will the Real Endpoint Threat Detection and Response Please Stand Up? This webinar explores new technologies & process for protecting endpoints from advanced attackers as well as the innovations that are pushing the envelope...
- What should I look for in a Next Generation Firewall? SANS Provides Guidance With so many vendors claiming to have a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), it can be difficult to tell what makes each one different....
- Why Are Customers Really Deploying an NGFW? It seems every IT Security expert is talking about the NGFW, but what are people really doing? This webcast covers 5 real-world customer...
- Charting Your Analytical Future - "Making predictive analytics part of your business processes" Webinar This session will show how predictive analytics can be used throughout the organization by anyone looking for answers and how organizations can make...
- All Government IT Webcasts