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Twitter – Pull to refresh patent grants; Innovator’s Patent Agreement v1.0
In previous posts we have looked at both Twitter’s proposed Innovator’s Patent Agreement and the “Twitter” patent (1, 2). In the last week or so Twitter has obtained a further granted US patent (to the “pull to refresh” feature) and has released version 1.0 of their Innovator’s Patent Agreement (IPA).
Down below we take a look at the latest granted patent and the first version of the IPA.
Kim Dotcom and the Two-Factor Authentication patent: Inventor or not?
Twitter has finally got itself two-factor authentication in a bid to help stem the flow of account hacking. Following Twitter’s announcement, Kim Schmitz (better known as Kim Dotcom), the man behind Megaupload (you know, that file sharing site in a spot of hot water over in the US right now), made an announcement of his own: he, in fact, was the inventor of two-factor authentication, and holds a patent for it.
So is this true? IPCopy delves into the public records…
Twitter patent surfaces off the starboard bow
IPcopy took a quick look at the Twitter Innovator’s patent agreement recently and concluded that there was probably enough wiggle room in the agreement to allow Twitter to start legal actions against most people should they want to do so (see the earlier post here).
One thing that struck us at the time of writing the earlier article was the relative lack of Twitter patents and patent applications (we could only find three such patent documents and one of these belonged to TweetDeck).
Now comes news that Twitter has been working on another patent filing which reads much more closely onto their core business. This now granted US patent (US 8401009) can be found here. So, I hear you ask (probably), “How come you didn’t see that coming”? Good question.
Twitter’s patent agreement with inventors – a closer look
The “smartphone wars” have been in the news for a while now and have spawned a host of comments about the use of patents and the amount of litigation in this arena. Amongst all this commentary you may have come across Twitter’s Innovator’s Patent Agreement (the IPA). Wired recently carried an article by Ben Lee who is the head of litigation and intellectual property at Twitter. The article can be seen here and the agreement itself is also available here.
Twitter suggest that they don’t want patents to impede innovation and the IPA is their answer. According to Twitter, the IPA essentially provides “a promise not to sue anyone unless for a defensive purpose”. We thought we’d take a closer look at the IPA and see whether it can deliver on its promise and what it means for Twitter.