Facebook countersues Yahoo in patent row

As you might expect, Facebook has replied to Yahoo’s patent claim with a counter claim of its own.

According to Ars Technica, to fight the claim, Facebook had to rush out to the shops and buy a few patents of its own to fight back.

Several of the patents asserted today were acquired after Yahoo provoked Facebook. To make matters more messy, Facebook is also claiming that it has “implied” licenses to the very patents Yahoo is using to sue.

Yahoo’s 12 March lawsuit, claimed Facebook’s entire social network model was based on Yahoo’s social networking technology. It took advantage of a Facebook weakness, which is a shortage of patents, but Facebook apparently rushed out and bought a few. Some were filing for new patents and others it just bought from third parties.

Only two of the 10 patents asserted by Facebook came from within the company, including one obtained by none other than founder Mark Zuckerberg.

One was bought on 30 March, 2012, two others were acquired on 1 February, 2012, and two were acquired on 8 December, 2011. Three other patents asserted by Facebook are still recorded by the US Patent and Trademark Office as being owned by New York University, which must have been bought so recently that the transfer has not been recorded with the patent office.