Yahoo! in patent dispute with Facebook

Feb. 28, 2012 at 2:46 PM
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SUNNYVALE, Calif., Feb. 28 (UPI) -- Yahoo! says it may take legal action unless Facebook licenses some of its technologies as it says other U.S. Web and technology companies have done.

Yahoo's announcement puts it at odds with Facebook, with which the company enjoys a profitable relationship, particularly in the area of integration of Yahoo News with Facebook, reported Tuesday.

Traffic to the mobile Yahoo! News Web app from Facebook Mobile has more than tripled since Feb. 14 to 1.6 million visitors a day, a post last week on Facebook's developer blog said.

"Yahoo! has a responsibility to its shareholders, employees and other stakeholders to protect its intellectual property," the company said in a statement.

"We have invested substantial resources into these innovations. Recognizing that, other major Web and technology companies have already licensed some of these technologies.

"We must insist that Facebook either enter into a licensing agreement or we will be compelled to move forward unilaterally to protect our rights," the Yahoo! statement said.

While Yahoo! did not disclose which technologies it wanted Facebook to license, The New York Times reported the company is demanding Facebook license 10 to 20 patents in technologies including advertising, personalization of Web sites, social networking and messaging.

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