Yahoo, Xfire settle lawsuit

Yearlong dispute over patents used in Yahoo Messenger resolved outside of court.


A little over a year ago, Internet giant Yahoo filed suit against Xfire, alleging that its gamer chat program infringed on patents used in the company's Yahoo Messenger instant message service. The two parties spent most of the year winding through the legal process, until in November, both sides asked for a delay in the proceedings so that they could make another attempt at coming to a settlement among themselves.

Today an Xfire representative confirmed for GameSpot that those efforts were successful and the lawsuit has been settled. The confirmation included no details about the settlement.

The Yahoo patent was granted to two former Yahoo employees, Brian Gottlieb and Chris Kirmse, in March of 2004. After his tenure at Yahoo ended, Kirmse transitioned to Xfire, becoming its vice president of engineering. Yahoo claimed that after Kirmse joined Xfire, he "began to develop, test, and offer instant messenger 'client' software and a messenger server that, when operated with game servers, offers the capabilities of [Yahoo Messenger]."

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