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Google, Facebook Disagrees With IBM Over Patents

By SiliconIndia   |   Tuesday, 12 February 2013, 10:57 Hrs
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Bangalore: In a case of granting patents over software, lawyers argued on if software should be patented at all, in a set of proceedings, which was closely watched by Google, Facebook and other technology companies, reports of TOI.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit heard arguments in the case on whether patents for a computerized system are valid for exchanging financial obligations. The case has gained attention as it could decide on the parameters for software patent protection.

The case started in 2007, when Alice Corp of Melbourne, Australia filed a lawsuit against CLS Bank International for patent infringement. Currently, National Australia Bank owns half of Alice. CLS, which runs a foreign-exchange settlement system disagreed that the Alice patents were invalid because they were only an abstract idea.

In July, a panel of judges agreed with Alice in a 2-1 decision. Google, Dell and Facebook filed a friend-of-the-court brief criticizing the decision, arguing that patents like Alice’s do not deserve patent protection, to which LinkedIn, Twitter and the others agreed to.

 In contrast, International Business Machines, filed a brief stating almost all the software inventions are qualified for patent protection. As IBM topped the list of US patent recipients for 20 years; the company warned the court against creating a strict rule.

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