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Google Becomes OIN's First End User Licensee "To Help Linux Thrive"
Tuesday, August 07 2007 @ 03:12 AM EDT

Google has become an Open Invention Network licensee. Here's the press release about it.

“Linux plays a vital role at Google, and we're strongly committed to supporting the Linux developer community,” said Chris DiBona, Google open source programs manager. “We believe that by becoming an Open Invention Network licensee, we can encourage Linux development and foster innovation in a way that benefits everyone. We're proud to participate in OIN's mission to help Linux thrive.”

This is huge. All previous licensees have been developers, sellers or resellers of Linux. Plus... let's be real. It's Google. OIN becomes increasingly important as a shield against patent attacks.

Media reactions:

  • Charles Babcock, Information Week: The addition of Google means seven companies have formed a bulwark of protection around Linux....

    The Open Invention Network's set of Linux patents numbered over 100 before Google joined its ranks. DiBona couldn't say exactly how many patents Google will add to the portfolio, but he noted Google staffers include many Linux contributors.

  • China Martens, Infoworld: OIN hopes Google becoming a licensee will result in many other end-user organizations, both large and small, following its lead, according to Jerry Rosenthal, CEO of OIN. "Google clearly wants to see Linux succeed," he added. "They've become much more vocal about their support of Linux."

    In a blog posting on its Web site, Chris DiBona, open-source programs manager at Google, stressed how much the search giant relies on Linux. "Ever since Google got its start, Linux has given us the power and flexibility we need to serve millions of users around the world," he wrote. Being an OIN licensee enables companies like Google to focus less on patent issues and more on developing software and is therefore "the legal equivalent of taking a long, deep, relaxing breath," DiBona added. "We believe that Linux innovation moves fastest when developers can share their knowledge with full peace of mind."

*********************************

Open Invention Network™ Extends The Linux Ecosystem As Google Becomes Its First End-User Licensee

San Francisco (August 7, 2007) Open Invention Network (OIN), the company formed to spur innovation and protect the Linux System, today extended the Linux Ecosystem with the signing of Google as its first end-user licensee. By becoming a licensee, Google has joined the growing list of companies that are leveraging the Open Invention Network to share Linux–based intellectual property.

Patents owned by Open Invention Network are available royalty-free to any company, institution or individual that agrees not to assert its patents against the Linux System. This enables companies to continue to make significant corporate and capital expenditure investments in Linux – helping to fuel economic growth. By developing a web of Linux developers, distributors, sellers, resellers and end-users that license its patent portfolio, Open Invention Network is creating a supportive and shielded ecosystem to ensure the growth and adoption of Linux.

“As we look to grow the Linux Ecosystem, we are pleased to have Google become our first end-user licensee,” said Jerry Rosenthal, chief executive officer of Open Invention Network. “Google is one of a growing number of companies, of all sizes, that value the openness and collaborative culture of the Linux community. We applaud their support for Linux.”

“Linux plays a vital role at Google, and we're strongly committed to supporting the Linux developer community,” said Chris DiBona, Google open source programs manager. “We believe that by becoming an Open Invention Network licensee, we can encourage Linux development and foster innovation in a way that benefits everyone. We're proud to participate in OIN's mission to help Linux thrive.”

OIN has accumulated more than 100 strategic, worldwide patents and patent applications. These patents are available to all licensees as part of the patent portfolio that OIN is creating around, and in support of Linux. This makes it economically attractive for companies that want to repackage, embed and use Linux to host specialized services or create complementary products. Additionally, it helps ensure the continuation of innovation that has benefited software vendors, customers, emerging markets and investors.

The Open Invention Network license agreement can be found at www.openinventionnetwork.com/pat_license.php.

About Open Invention Network

Open Invention Network is an intellectual property company formed to further the Linux System by acquiring patents and ensuring their availability. It promotes a positive, fertile Linux Ecosystem, which in turn drives innovation and choice in the global marketplace. Open Invention Network has considerable industry backing. It was launched in 2005, and has received investments from IBM, NEC, Novell, Philips, Red Hat and Sony. For more information go to www.openinventionnetwork.com.

Open Invention Network, OIN and the Open Invention Network logo are the properties of Open Invention Network, LLC. Google is a trademark of Google Inc. All other brands and trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


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