Microsoft down to final option in i4i case

Toronto company i4i Inc. has won another legal battle against Microsoft Corp. in an ongoing war over XML patents. And Microsoft may have to make its last stand before the Supreme Court of the United States after three years before the courts.

In April, the U.S. Court of Appeals denied Microsoft’s request for an en banc hearing before the full 12-member court, appealing a jury verdict that Redmond had wilfully violated i4i’s intellectual property. Microsoft made the request in early March, after a three-judge panel upheld a $240-million judgment against the company over custom XML technology in Microsoft Word.

Microsoft then asked for a re-examination of the i4i patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. On Tuesday, the PTO certified the validity of the patents.
(Coincidentally, the PTO was one of i4i’s first customers. In 2000, i4i completed a 30,000 unit custom XML deployment for the PTO, which was i4i’s largest single deployment at the time. They no longer have a working relationship, according to a company spokesperson.)
Microsoft’s last avenue of appeal is the Supreme Court. Microsoft has until Aug. 27 to have its appeal certified by the court.
I4i filed suite against Microsoft in May 2007. In May 2009, a Texas jury ruled in favour of i4i.
Reached in Shanghai by ComputerWorld Canada, i4i chairman Loudon Owen said he’s not frustrated by the ongoing legal manoeuvering.
“It’s a process,” Owen said. “We’re well aware what the process is … ‘Once more unto the breach, dear friends.’ It’s the nature of the beast.”
The process of defending intellectual property rights is “not for the faint of heart … this type of process takes time and it takes money.”
Microsoft is reviewing its options. “We continue to believe that there are important matters of patent law that still need to be properly addressed,” said Kevin Kutz, director of public affairs for Microsoft, in a written statement that matched, word for word, Microsoft’s reaction to the April decision by the Court of Appeals.

View the whole Microsoft versus i4i timeline here.


Would you recommend this article?


Thanks for taking the time to let us know what you think of this article!
We'd love to hear your opinion about this or any other story you read in our publication.

Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

Featured Download

Dave Webb
Dave Webb
Dave Webb is a freelance editor and writer. A veteran journalist of more than 20 years' experience (15 of them in technology), he has held senior editorial positions with a number of technology publications. He was honoured with an Andersen Consulting Award for Excellence in Business Journalism in 2000, and several Canadian Online Publishing Awards as part of the ComputerWorld Canada team.

Featured Articles

ADaPT connects employers with highly skilled young workers

Help wanted. That’s what many tech companies across Canada are saying, and research shows...

Unlocking Transformation: IoT and Generative AI Powered by Cloud

Amidst economic fluctuations and disruptive forces, Canadian businesses are steering through uncharted waters. To...

Related Tech News

Tech Jobs

Our experienced team of journalists and bloggers bring you engaging in-depth interviews, videos and content targeted to IT professionals and line-of-business executives.

Tech Companies Hiring Right Now