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Old 05-11-2005   #1
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Yahoo v. FindWhat mistrial

Moderator note: Split from Was this included in the Google/Yahoo settlement?

Yahoo v. Findwhat patent infringement trial ended today in a deadlocked jury. District Court Judge Carney declared a mistrial after the jury became "hopelessly deadlocked" on the issues after hearing testimony by the two parties over the last three weeks. The jury appears to have given due respect to the issues as they deliberated four full days.
Yahoo faces the prospect of having the '361' patent found unenforceable if a jury rules against them in a retrial.

Last edited by dannysullivan : 05-12-2005 at 02:26 PM.
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Old 05-12-2005   #2
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Apparently, the jury agreed on the patent issues, siding with Yahoo, but disagreed on other aspects. Here's what Yahoo sent me, which I've also posted on the blog:

Quote:
We are pleased to learn the jury has determined that FindWhat infringed on all of the patent claims that were before the jury and at issue in the trial. It is unfortunate that the jury did not reach conclusion on the remaining issues. We look forward to resolving all remaining issues in the post-trial briefing that has been scheduled by the court.
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Old 05-12-2005   #3
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According to the Reuters story, in the wake of the mistrial,

"RBC Capital Markets analyst Jordan Rohan said the most likely outcome of the case would be a modest out-of-court settlement. He estimated that FindWhat could settle the case for around $7 million to $8 million."

Gosh, I find that hard to believe. That would be like a Get Out of Jail Free Card.

All the news about this company recently has been negative, but if they wriggle out of the lawsuit and put their financial accounting misstatements behind them (the world has probably seen worse), it's a relative blank slate, you would think. Under that scenario the company would once again be a screaming buy at $3-5 a share. Not that this is an investment forum.
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Old 05-12-2005   #4
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I agree Andrew that 7 to 8 million for the license would be a gift or as you say a "get out of jail free card".

I would expect an agreement before the June court date. Yahoo cannot play cute with this judge. He listened to 3 weeks of testimony and judges hate to waste 3 weeks of work with no result. The judge also knows better than anyone the jury's points of contention. Yahoo and Findwhat can conjecture on points but the judge knows his jury.

If I were Yahoo I would be wary of a backlash by the judge if they come back in June without some substantive negotiation to report.
This is a classic David and Goliath. The jury did not cave to the giant.
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