Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 9th Jan 2010 22:23 UTC
Legal "Microsoft has filed a second appeal in their XML patent case, claiming the original ruling could be dangerous for future patent cases. Last month, the software giant lost to tiny Canadian company i4i, and removed all infringing custom XML editing abilities from its Office 2003 and 2007 suite. Microsoft also paid USD 290 million in damages."
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I wonder..
by fasted on Sun 10th Jan 2010 05:02 UTC
fasted
Member since:
2006-11-09

how much money ms has paid out in legal fees vs the amount they actually saved in lost revenue from software. I know we're talking hundreds of billions of dollars, but how much is enough? This uber capitalism seem's alot like the cold war, where the victory is the only important thing. At the end of the war, you move on to the next enemy, spending trillions to protect what you believe is the correct path. In the mean time, people are being trampled on, and new enemies are being made. Enemies that will last for years to come, and all of it completely avoidable. In Microsoft's case, this is indeed money that could be spent on educating people threw greatly reduced software prices, and improved software by working with, instead of against your competition.
It just boggles the mind to think of the possibilities that could occur with more cooperation amongst people , instead of the endless string of litigated conflict that primarily occupies todays business world.

Reply Score: 3

RE: I wonder..
by malxau on Sun 10th Jan 2010 07:48 in reply to "I wonder.."
malxau Member since:
2005-12-04

how much money ms has paid out in legal fees vs the amount they actually saved in lost revenue from software...this is indeed money that could be spent on educating people threw greatly reduced software prices, and improved software by working with, instead of against your competition...


This is correct, but note that Microsoft is the victim here. This feature is obscure, and clearly worth less than the hundreds-of-millions damages award (which is why it was removed.) Obviously MS would rather spend the hundreds-of-millions damages award, plus the (I'm guessing) tens-of-millions legal fees towards improving software. Unfortunately, the act of improving software and adding functionality brings about lawsuits like these, so things end up finding an equilibrium.

It's not like Microsoft had a choice to avoid spending on both legal fees and damages here (at least, not without also avoiding spending money improving its software.) Less legal fees == greater damages payouts.

The best way to avoid this would be to restrict software patents such that software developers are not hamstrung by patents which are clearly obvious to anyone 'skilled in the art.'

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: I wonder..
by lemur2 on Sun 10th Jan 2010 09:10 in reply to "RE: I wonder.."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

It's not like Microsoft had a choice to avoid spending on both legal fees and damages here


Of course they did. Microsoft could have just licensed i4i's technology in the first place, instead of stealing it.

Reply Parent Score: 3