After a little bit of “come at me bro”-style posturing last month, in which Internet company Yahoo demanded licensing fees from Facebook OR ELSE, Yahoo finally made good on its threats and is taking Facebook to court.
The lawsuit, filed on Monday, claims that Facebook is infringing 10 of Yahoo’s patents for social networking, ads and privacy settings. When Yahoo threatened to sue Facebook in February if it refused to pay up, the social network vowed it would defend against Yahoo’s “puzzling actions.”
But the bluff has been called, the gauntlet thrown, and now Facebook will have a patent war to deal with as it prepares for an initial public offering of its stock this spring. At the end of 2011, Facebook only owned 56 patents, whereas Yahoo owns more than 1,000, so losing the 10 contested patents in this dispute could be a pretty big blow for Facebook.