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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

March 2, 2012 at 1:40 PM

ITC turns down consideration of BN appeal on Microsoft patents decision

The U.S. International Trade Commission has turned down Barnes and Noble’s request for a review of an ITC judge’s earlier decision to dismiss the bookseller’s claims that Microsoft had misused its patents.

AN ITC notice issued today “shows that B&N failed to present to the Commission a reason to doubt the (administrative law judge’s) decision,” according to Florian Mueller, an intellectual property consultant who’s been following the case. Mueller writes about this, and other tech patent cases, on his FOSS Patents blog and has been hired by Microsoft to research certain patents.

The decision comes in the midst of a legal battle between Microsoft and Barnes & Noble over patents. Microsoft asserts that the bookstore chain’s Nook e-reader and Nook Color tablets, which run on Google’s Android software, infringe on three of Microsoft’s patents.

Barnes & Noble, in turn, had asked regulators to review whether Microsoft’s patent-licensing agreements with makers of Android devices are anti-competitive.

Before the trial started, ITC staff had said they would recommend that the judge find that the bookseller had not violated any of Microsoft’s patents. But that recommendation is not binding on the commission, Mueller noted in his blog post.

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