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Microsoft Wins Most of Georgia Counterfeiting Case

Microsoft%20Logo%20-%20Small.jpgIn 2006, Microsoft Corp. brought suit in the Northern District of Georgia against Silver Star Micro, Inc., and its principal, Chase Campbell, for trademark and copyright infringement. On Jan. 6, Judge William Duffey, Jr., granted in large part Microsoft’s motion for summary judgment and imposed a permanent injunction against the defendants.

The court found in April 2005, Silver Star Micro, doing business as USA Tech Store on the Internet at www.techusastore.com, sold a counterfeit copy of MICROSOFT SQL SERVER 2000. Microsoft notified defendants that it had purchased improperly sold Microsoft software and demanded that defendants cease further infringing activity.

In September 2005, law enforcement executed on a search warrant at defendants’ premises and seized disks containing counterfeit copies of MICROSOFT OFFICE 97, MICROSOFT WINDOWS XP PROFESSIONAL, 72 counterfeit Microsoft Product Key labels and 300 units of Microsoft Volume License Media.

In December 2005 and on three occasions in March 2006, defendants sold WINDOWS XP PROFESSIONAL CD-ROMs with counterfeit product key labels and counterfeit product keys.

Microsoft%20Logo%20-%20Flying%20Window2.gifOn summary judgment, the court found: “Microsoft’s trademarks are associated worldwide with Microsoft products, and there is little doubt that the Defendants sold infringing software with the intent that its customers believe the software was authorized by Microsoft. ‘Where, as here, one produces counterfeit goods in an attempt to capitalize upon the popularity of, and demand for, another’s product, there is a presumption of a likelihood of confusion.’ Polo Fashions, Inc. v. Craftex, Inc., 816 F.2d 145, 148 (4th Cir. 1987). Like in Polo Fashions, confusion is presumed here, and the Court grants summary judgment to Microsoft of trademark infringement on Nos. 1,200,236, 1,872,264, 1,815,350, and 2,744,843.

“Plaintiff has not, however, shown infringement of its trademarks related exclusively to the Microsoft Office 97 suite of programs. The Lanham Act and appellate precedent require that a defendant must use a mark ‘in commerce’ to be liable for trademark infringement. The undisputed facts in this case show that the Defendants possessed an infringing copy of Microsoft Office 97. The facts of this case do not show that the Defendants used the marks related to Microsoft Office 97 in any sort of commercial transaction. In the absence of evidence showing the ‘in commerce’ requirement, the Court denies summary judgment of trademark infringement and false designation of origin as to Trademark Registration Nos. 1,475,795 (‘POWERPOINT’), 1,741,086 (‘MICROSOFT ACCESS’), and 2,188,125 (‘OUTLOOK’).

The court awarded Microsoft $30,000 for each of the nine copyrights infringed, plus $25,000 for each of the four trademarks infringed, for total of $370,000. The court also found this was an “exceptional” case under the Lanham Act, entitling Microsoft to an award of its attorneys’ fees and costs.

Finally, the court entered a permanent injunction against the defendants, enjoining them from copying, selling, or making any other infringing use of Microsoft products.

The case cite is Microsoft Corp. v. Silver Star Micro, Inc., No. 06-1350 (N.D. Ga. Jan. 9, 2008).

Posted on January 20, 2008 by Registered CommenterMichael Atkins in | Comments1 Comment

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Reader Comments (1)

RE: Microsoft Corp. v. Silver Star Micro, Inc., No. 06-1350 (N.D. Ga. Jan. 9, 2008).

Dear Michael,

I could be an asset of knowledge for Microsoft and your firm. If there is serious interest, and by serious I am not talking about doing things over emails !!!! or any other clever way to get something for nothing...Dont waste my time please.
But help me understand this....What is the big defeat that has occured here in this case?
The money microsoft has lost to fund this lawsuit? Or the 3-4 million in revenue SilverStar made that was obtanable to recover due to being gone. So help me understand this.. court awarded microsoft $300,000 + to compensate them.. and to top this, the court entered a permanent injunction against the defendants, enjoining them from copying, selling, or making any other infringing use of Microsoft products. Thats about as good as the paper is was typed on since he has continued to operated " business as usual" during and after the Judgement..
So I'll let ya sit on that and if ya serious reply here and we can go from there..

February 19, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBook Of knowledge

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