The shock filing – said to have been aggregated by new CEO Scott Thompson – is controversial given that Facebook is a long-time business partner of Yahoo! and arguably the most powerful online site in the industry.
Yahoo is alleging that Facebook’s News Feed service, advertising methods and other features use Yahoo intellectual property, without proper acknowledgement or payment, as reported by All Things Digital.
“Facebook’s entire social network model, which allows users to create profile for and connect with, among other things, persons and businesses, is based on Yahoo’s patented social networking technology,” Yahoo’s lawsuit states.
Yahoo is now seeking payment and an injunction to block Facebook from using the patents.
In an official statement Yahoo! says:
“Yahoo! has invested substantial resources in research and development through the years, which has resulted in numerous patented inventions of technology that other companies have licensed. These technologies are the foundation of our business that engages over 700 million monthly unique visitors and represent the spirit of innovation upon which Yahoo! is built. Unfortunately, the matter with Facebook remains unresolved and we are compelled to seek redress in federal court. We are confident that we will prevail.”
Facebook, responded to the matter, confused by the lack of direct communication from Yahoo! and the legal action that has resulted:
“We’re disappointed that Yahoo, a longtime business partner of Facebook and a company that has substantially benefited from its association with Facebook, has decided to resort to litigation. Once again, we learned of Yahoo’s decision simultaneously with the media. We will defend ourselves vigorously against these puzzling actions.”
What do you think? Does Yahoo! have a legitimate case against Facebook? Leave your comments in the field below.