US Report: IE lawsuit settled

Microsoft and SyNet have settled out of court over who owns the "Internet Explorer" name.

After testimony yesterday, Microsoft offered the trustees of SyNet $5m (£3m) to settle the lawsuit, and the trustees accepted.

Dhiren Rana, who owned the once thriving SyNet service and who sued Microsoft in late 1995, was not immediately available for comment.

Microsoft had argued that the Internet Explorer name is now generic, like aspirin. It had asked the judge to dismiss the case, and had petitioned the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to block Rana's application. "The difficulty with this argument, for Microsoft, is that Microsoft has been using the term as a trademark, which is inconsistent with Microsoft's position now that it's a generic term," said Andy Basile, a trademark attorney at U.S. law firm McBride, Baker & Coles.

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