The U.S. government waded into the high-stakes legal battle between Research In Motion Ltd. and patent collector NTP Inc. yesterday, saying a possible U.S. ban of the popular BlackBerry wireless e-mail device could put essential government services in jeopardy.
“The injunction would literally prevent RIM from providing the services that would be essential for the federal government, as well as state and local governments, to continue their use of the BlackBerry devices,” the U.S. Department of Justice stated in a court filing.
The government department wants 90 days notice before a U.S. trial court enforces the potentially crippling injunction on BlackBerry devices in the United States to ensure public workers can keep using the devices, which many users call “CrackBerrys” for their addictive nature.
Lance Johnson, an intellectual property lawyer in Washington, D.C., said the filing is good news for RIM.
“This really throws a wrench into things [for NTP],” Mr. Johnson said. “It brings to this [legal] forum a national-security and government-functioning imperative that was not there before.”