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Microsoft The Courts Your Rights Online

US Judge Rules Against German Microsoft Injunction 272

angry tapir writes "In an unusual case, a U.S. judge has ruled that Motorola cannot enforce an injunction that would prevent Microsoft from selling Windows products in Germany, should a German court issue such an injunction next week. Microsoft asked the judge for the ruling in anticipation of an injunction that a German court is expected to issue related to a patent infringement suit that Motorola filed against Microsoft in Germany. The suit centers primarily on Motorola licenses that have been declared essential to the H.264 video standard. The German injunction is expected on April 17."
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US Judge Rules Against German Microsoft Injunction

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  • Divide and Conquer (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 12, 2012 @05:44AM (#39655329)

    They should issue the injunction anyway, then Motorola should get the ruling in the US overturned, then they should go against Microsoft for damages for the delayed injunction in Germany.

    Microsoft, of course, wants far far more per handset in patent licenses for patents it won't even list in open documents they're so weak. So its a little rich to complain about the license fee Motorola wants from them for H264.

    So this is very typically Microsoft, it cannot win the case in Germany apparently, so it stirs up anti-German sentiment in the USA and tries to divide the US and Germany to its own advantage. Nasty, very nasty.

  • LOL (Score:3, Interesting)

    by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @05:59AM (#39655391) Journal
    America just dropped further on the anti-corruption list. Looks like another judge has been bought by MS. As I recall earlier, a fool was gripping that MS is unfairly singled out by media. Yet, here is MS getting an American judge to prevent Motorola from exercising their legal rights in Germany. Sick and Twisted that judges can be bought so easily.
  • Re:Eh? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @06:05AM (#39655425) Homepage

    I tend to think that if Motorola does something in Germany, they will pay the consequences here in the US. Of course the US judge doesn't expect his ruling to have any effect on what happens in Germany. This is the US seeking to control what plaintiffs do in other countries.

    Is this an example of the US over-reaching? Oh yeah. But this is about trying to get Motorola, a company with presence in the US, to behave in a fashion which suits the interests of the businesses in the US... or at least the ones who have been contributing the most to government election campaigns.

    Things are getting more heated and more dirty. Also, very, very interesting.

  • Re:Eh? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ChunderDownunder ( 709234 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @06:58AM (#39655639)

    What the judge has basically said is sort your shit out in your own country (US) and don't waste the German court's time. Settle the patent dispute in your own country first and negotiate global licensing based on sales per unit in each country.

    Currently we have an abuse a dozen or so tech mega-corporations trying out patent-sharing agreements in each country they do business. Extortion failed in 1 country? We'll try it out in the other 195-odd countries throughout the world and we'll find a sympathetic judge.

    This isn't about the sovereignty of the German nation, it's international corporations misusing the courts around the world. My point was, US companies suing each other based on US patents and a tit-for-tat dispute in foreign courts.

  • Re:Eh? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @07:16AM (#39655713) Homepage

    And that is definitely an issue for an appeals court or the supreme court to rule on. But how far does that go? After all, companies and individuals are routinely held to account for operating within the unspoken rules of business in China which is all about bribes and corruption being built right into the culture and expectations of all involved.

    So it's not a question of practice, but where the line should be drawn isn't it?

  • Re:Eh? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MDillenbeck ( 1739920 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @07:23AM (#39655747)

    Since I am seeing this same reaction in several threads, I'll do the legwork and post it in each one... From the source article:

    The U.S. court should be the one to rule on that issue, Microsoft argued, because Microsoft filed its lawsuit against Motorola over the terms of a licensing deal before Motorola filed its suit in Germany.

    However, I do agree - in no way should the US be able to dictate to another country their legal system beyond the standard actions of imposing sanctions and/or embargoes. After all, I don't think anyone would say a state that violates human rights (for example, only certain types of citizens are legally defined as human and the rest are 'livestock' or 'property') should be allowed to operate without consequence. This means petty reasons could be used as justification, for to deny a country a right to apply an embargo or sanction would also be a violation of a state's sovereign rights.

  • Re:Eh? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by stiggle ( 649614 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @07:41AM (#39655869)

    It's not a case of protecting a US company. It's the judge protecting his court, as a similar case is due in front of him there next month.
    So the US judge would rather not have a German court decide on the issue before he gets his chance to as preserving US court power is more important than abiding by international law.

    But to add a twist - Motorola is now under investigation by the EU over 'standards-based patents' following complaints by Apple & Microsoft. []

  • Re:Eh? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pugugly ( 152978 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @07:52AM (#39655933)

    My reading of this is that the German lawsuit was filed after the U.S. lawsuit, expressly because Motorola didn't particularly like the way the U.S. Lawsuit was going, aka Motorola was Forum Shopping after the fact and hoping to use that result to pressure Microsoft to give in the original case.

    Practically I don't see that the U.S. Court had any choice but to slap them down hard to discourage that as a tactic. Don't like how your case is going here? Sue in France!


  • Re:It's a fact (Score:5, Interesting)

    by smpoole7 ( 1467717 ) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @08:19AM (#39656121) Homepage

    OH, and as for the Russians (or if you're going to be historically accurate, the "Soviets" -- i.e., the Soviet Union): yeah, their military bounced back and probably could have defeated the Nazis by themselves . .. .

    IF they had the food. After perestroika and glasnost, a number of former Soviet leaders came forward to publicly state that American supplies during WWII, especially food, made a huge difference. Remember, the Nazis had overrun and had occupied most of "Russia's" food basket. They were starving. That's why, as soon as the USA became involved, Stalin requested two things: (1), that the USA and UK open a second front against Germany ASAP to help take the pressure off of them, and (2), FOOD. Lots and lots of food. Tons of food.

    Which we supplied.

    This really is off-topic; we were discussing an American judge issuing an injunction in advance of a German court's decision -- but I was specifically addressing the historical inaccuracies in your post. Now I'm off to work.

BLISS is ignorance.