Remember Yahoo!? Way, way, way back in the day, they used to be a respectable web company. Then they got beaten like a veal by, well, pretty much everybody, but especially Google, who they’ve been chasing for years.
So, they’ve started engaging in one of the end-stage process of website death: litigation. Specifically, they’re suing Facebook over some of Yahoo!’s patents.
Why? At a guess, it’s because Facebook has lots of money and Yahoo! may, depending on who you believe, actually have a case. They’re claiming Facebook accidentally infringed on ten patents related to privacy, customization, messaging, social networking, and advertising.
Reports Ars Technica:
Yahoo’s complaint does not allege that Facebook directly copied Yahoo’s products. Rather, Yahoo appears to have claimed broad categories of website functionality, which Facebook may have infringed by accident in the process of building its own website.
For example, Yahoo accuses Facebook of infringing Patent no. 7454509, “Online playback system with community bias.” While the patent is written in dense legalese (“A method comprising providing a first community having members, each member of the first community having associated preferences regarding data stream content…”), it appears to claim the concept of serving up customized content to different users in a social network based on their individual preferences.
Yeah, we laughed at the idea of “Facebook” and “privacy” in the same sentence too. Apparently this process has been inspired by their new CEO, Scott Thompson. Sadly, though, he is not the member of the Kids In the Hall, because that would have made this lawsuit awesome.
(Image via Yahoo!)