EFF Wants Your Help To Beat The Bogus Podcasting Patent

Nov 19th, 2009 | By | Category: Featured Story, Podcasting Law

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The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) wants your help to beat a recently approved patent on podcasting that many feel is bogus.

In July, Volomedia announced that it had been awarded a US patent on podcasting, and the company said that  it expects companies creating products relating to podcasting and media synchronization to enter into partnerships with VoloMedia.

Many think the Volomedia patent is overly broad and fails to take into consideration prior work.

“I’m certainly not a lawyer or an expert in patent law,” said podcast pioneer Dave Winer upon hearing of Volomedia’s patent announcement, “but it seems the work Adam Curry and I did in creating the format and protocol for podcasting, in 2001, may have inspired their ‘invention’. It certainly predates it.”

EFF agreed – so they are are working on “busting” the Volomedia patent, and they want your help:

In order to bust this patent, we are looking for additional “prior art” — or evidence that the podcasting methods described in the patent were already in use before November 19, 2003.

In particular, we’re looking for written descriptions of methods that allow a user to download pre-programmed episodic media like audio files or video files from a remote publisher, with the download occurring after the user subscribes to the episodes, and with the user continuing to automatically receive new episodes.

EFF has previously taken on ten of the worst free-speech and innovation crushing software patents approved by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and they’ve been successful at taking a bite out of eight of the ten so far.

See the EFF page on the case for more information.

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3 Responses to “EFF Wants Your Help To Beat The Bogus Podcasting Patent”

  1. Jason Warden says:

    A bunch of crap. It'll never hold up. You can only take my podcast from my cold dead hands

  2. Jason Warden says:

    A bunch of crap. It'll never hold up. You can only take my podcast from my cold dead hands

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