Adobe responds to Macromedia lawsuit
Specifically, Macromedia claims that Adobe has infringed on Patent '299 registered on December 1, 1998 entitled Draw-based Editor for Web Pages. The second patent (Patent '145) registered on June 8, 1999 covers Hierarchical Structure Editor for Web Sites.
While Adobe hasn't been officially served with papers yet, they have made a preliminary review of the complaint believe "the claims have no merit and [they] will vigorously defend the suit."
Adobe goes on to say that "if a court were to ultimately agree with Macromedia that the Adobe Photoshop product infringes this patent, Adobe would have to either reach an agreement with Macromedia for rights to license this patent or Adobe would have to change Photoshop so it no longer infringes this patent. However, as stated above, Adobe believes Macromedia's claims are without merit and will defend this lawsuit."
Apparently, the patents in question were just acquired by Macromedia in the last month or two from NetObjects. Of course, now that Macromedia owns the patents, they have the right to protect what they feel is theirs.
This isn't the first time Adobe has heard of these particular patents. "When Adobe acquired GoLive a couple of years ago, NetObjects contacted Adobe claiming that the GoLive product infringed these patents. Adobe reviewed the patents at that time and determined that GoLive did not infringe these patents. NetObjects was informed of Adobe's determination and did not pursue the matter further."