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April 6, 2004

Lindows fails to prevent Microsoft’s international suits

Desktop Linux vendor Lindows.com Inc has failed in its attempt to prevent Microsoft Corp from pursuing trademark infringement claims against it in Europe after a judge ruled in Microsoft's favor.

By CBR Staff Writer

US District Judge John Coughenour’s ruling rejected San Diego, California-based Lindows.com’s request to delay Microsoft’s suits in the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden, France, and Canada, until a similar US case is decided.

Microsoft claims that the Lindows.com name infringes its Windows trademark, but has had mixed success in enforcing its claim against the company. The latest US ruling is the first that has gone in its favor. Microsoft twice failed to persuade the Court to grant an injunction during 2002, and suffered the ignominy of Judge Coughenour casting doubt on whether the company should have been allowed to trademark the word windows at all.

It has been more successful in Europe where has won a preliminary injunction preventing Lindows.com from operating in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. It has also filed complaints in Finland, Sweden, France and Canada.

In March, Microsoft asked the Dutch Court to fine Lindows.com 100,000 euros ($122,230) per day unless its blocks access to its web site from Benelux countries, something Lindows.com claims is impossible and would evade the US Court’s previous ruling, prompting it to request Coughenour stop Microsoft’s European actions.

In a statement, Microsoft described Lindows.com’s failed attempt to prevent its European actions as a baseless effort… to avoid the jurisdiction of international courts. Lindows.com has yet to comment.

This article is based on material originally published by ComputerWire

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