Yahoo has filed an intellectual property (IP) lawsuit against Facebook.Yahoo claims the social network has infringed 10 of its patents including systems and methods for advertising on the web. Facebook denies the allegation.
The move comes ahead of Facebook’s planned flotation next month.
Patent litigation has become common between the smartphone makers, but this marks a new front in the battles between technology companies.
A statement from Yahoo suggested the web portal believed it has a strong case.
“Yahoo’s patents relate to cutting edge innovations in online products, including in messaging, news feed generation, social commenting, advertising display, preventing click fraud and privacy controls,” its suit said.
“Facebook’s entire social network model, which allows users to create profiles and connect with, among other things, persons and businesses, is based on Yahoo’s patented social networking technology.
The social network signalled that it believed that Yahoo had not tried hard to settle the matter without involving the courts. It described Yahoo’s action as “puzzling”.
Yahoo recently overhauled its board appointing Scott Thompson as its chief executive in January. The former Paypal executive replaced Carol Bartz who had been ousted in September.
Yahoo’s co-founder, Jerry Yang, also resigned from the board in January. The firm’s chairman and three other board members announced their decision to step down shortly afterwards.
The Wall Street Journal had reported that many Yahoo employees expected fresh job cuts following consecutive quarters of revenue declines.
Mr Thompson’s decision to sue may secure fresh funds or other assets if the courts rule in his favour.
The latest suit was filed in the US district court for the northern district of California.