X.org joins the Open Invention Network
The X.org Foundation has joined the Open Invention Network (OIN), the patent pool designed to protect Linux by using patents defensively. The Foundation says that it made the decision to join the group in order to better protect the future of the X Window System – which serves as the basis for graphical user interfaces in a majority of Linux distributions – against potential patent claims.
The X.org Foundation has received a licence from the Open Invention Network to use any patent that is available within the OIN. However, the announcement points out that this protection has only been granted to the X.org Foundation; it recommends that vendors, distributors and contributing organisations also consider joining the OIN non-aggression community to receive similar protection against potential patent claims.
The announcement also calls on contributors to join the "Defensive Publications" programme that, for example, documents the ideas of open source developers in the form of defensive publications; these documents become part of a prior art database at IP.com which is consulted by bodies such as the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) when considering new patent applications.