Posted 2 years ago | by Ben Armstrong
Square Forms – a Crypto Patent Coalition to Combat Patent Hogs
Square Crypto, a familiar name in the financial service sector regulated by Twitter’s CEO Jack Dorsey, has just announced an alliance to combat patent infringement and provide public access to crypto technology, called the Cryptocurrency Open Patent Alliance, or COPA.
The collaboration is pursuing a vision of democratizing access to technological innovations in the crypto-sector by specifying that, “open access to patents covering foundational cryptocurrency technologies is necessary for the community to grow, freely innovate, and build new and better products.”
COPA’s work will be based on a pooling foundation. In other words, each member has agreed to establish and implement cryptographic and blockchain patents in COPA’s library, guaranteeing the open access of running operations to technology.
The COPA website also pointed out:
“Cryptocurrency technology and its adoption is still at a nascent stage. We believe that cryptocurrency’s success depends on the community coming together to build and develop upon existing technologies to innovate, which is not possible when parties tie up foundational technology in patents and litigation.”
COPA Wants to Create a Fair System
With a goal to, “transform the way patents are viewed and used in the crypto world,” the coalition highlights the potential to use patents to facilitate innovation in the industry, instead of impeding the growth of the industry.
On 17 April, 2344 blockchain patents were held by Alibaba Group, the largest amount so far. In 2019, 470 patents of the group were issued, while Tencent filed 718 patents the same year, in an attempt to intensify its patent hoarding.
Craig Wight, disputable and self-proclaimed "satoshi," is also credited with being a patent hog for his attempts to obtain hundreds of blockchain patents, along with his company nChain. Only 3% of over 5800 submissions for blockchain patents were approved last year.
Patent Law isn't Perfect
It’s not just the blockchain industry, but the music industry is establishing a “collective shield” to fight against “patent aggressors.”
Earlier this year, musicians and programmers Damien Riehl and Noah Rubin made similar efforts to produce almost any possible melody in spite of a contentious musical dispute.
The "Dark Horse" copyright lawsuit in March reached to a closure with the California federal judge deciding Katy Perry won against the accusation filed by rapper Flame.
In the indictment, Flame emphasized that the famous singer used the tune from the 2009 song he composed for Dark Horse without permission.
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