Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is, of course , one of the big boys in tech, so it's no surprise that it has lots of attorneys on staff to defend patent rights and claims in various courtrooms around the world. Redmond has had its share of legal scraps involving patents, as well as trademarks, including a notorious case against a Canadian teenager who wanted to call his web-design business web site MikeRoweSoft.com. The company, like others, has been aggressive in fighting off these various attacks. Now, however, it seems that Redmond will be facing a new attack that involves its newly acquired video-conference platform, Skype.
Skype has been around for a few years, so the timing of this suit seems strategic, but Web Conference Encryption, which is affiliated with Copytele, has filed a patent infringement suit against Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), claiming that the Skype video-conferencing service uses a couple of patents from the 1990s that are used for e-mail attachments and telecommunication security on a video conference. WCE is seeking, through Copytele, some royalties and licensing fees for the patents, which are claimed to be used by any smartphones that uses Skype or any similar conferencing software.
In defense of the suit against Microsoft Corporation 9NASDAQ:MSFT) - we can only presume that Copytele is being accused of being a "patent troll" - Copytele CEO Robert Berman said, "Copytele’s contention is that they have just as much right to assert their patents as any big company, and that the “Troll” controversy is an illusion created by large companies to further influence the patent laws to their advantage."
As this lawsuit was only filed in federal court Wednesday morning, naturally Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is not commenting on the suit at this point - but we will keep you up-to-date as we hear more about this story. What are your thoughts? Do you think this lawsuit is legitimate? Give us your feedback in the comments section below.