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Mine! No, mine!

Sun, 09/17/2000 - 8:00pm
Karen Kessler

Akamai and Digital Island are duking it out in court and suing each other over technologies the competing companies both lay claim to.

Akamai filed suit first against DI over its Global Hosting System, for which Akamai received a patent on August 22, 2000. The patent covers aspects of Akamai's FreeFlow content delivery service. The suit claims that a current version of DI's competing content delivery service, called Footprint, infringes on Akamai's patent. DI then retaliated by filing a patent-infringement complaint with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, as well as suing Akamai in federal court in California.

"This is a classic textbook maneuver when it comes to patents," Jeff Young of Akamai public relations told CED. "We filed patent infringement [against DI] September 13 and fully expected this reaction from them."

"We believe our patent is substantial and DI is clearly infringing on it. We will continue to prevail in the marketplace as well as in the courts," said Young.

Digital Island reiterated the statement made by their Chairman and CEO, Ruann F. Ernst: "We are disappointed in Akamai's allegations and attempts to disrupt the operation of our Footprint Content Delivery Network. Based on Akamai's actions, however, we have no choice but to respond in kind. Outside of the courtroom, we will continue to seek a more rational approach to resolving this dispute."

"Who owns the intellectual copyright behind the technology [is in dipute]," said Alan Bernheimer, vice-president of corporate and marketing communications for Digital Island.

DI said they believe that the patent and trademark office will ultimately award the rights to the technology to them.

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