Desire2Learn has been engaged in a legal battle with its primary competitor Blackboard Inc. since 2006 when Blackboard filed a suit claiming Desire2Learn was infringing on its patents. The two companies make educational software, enabling teachers to create their own websites and run classes online.
The lawsuit is now a little closer to a resolution after a U.S. federal court of appeals overturned a lower Texas court verdict that found Desire2Learn in violation of 3 Blackboard patent claims. The court also upheld an earlier ruling that 35 of Blackboards patent claims are invalid.
Desire2Learn president and chief executive officer John Baker was thrilled with the outcome, "..for us it was a decisive victory that [has] been three years in the making". If the ruling is upheld the company will recoup $3.1 million it paid in damages plus Blackboards legal costs. The company is looking forward to putting the issue behind them and is expecting the U.S. Patent Office's final decision on Blackboards patents soon.