1. Patents and the Internet
2. Internet Patent Laws in Other Countries
3. Internet Patents and Geolocation Changes

An internet patent is a patent for businesses that are located on the internet. The Internet of Things (IoT) has been going on for quite some time. Many people are only beginning to see this. Intellectual property depends upon their internet-based businesses. Some internet business methods or software may meet the requirements for a patent. A patent is not always the best way to protect intellectual property.

Patents and the Internet

There are some events where you might not be able to qualify, or where a patent will cost much more money, time, and trouble than it is worth to get. There are many patents that were made for inventions having to do with the internet. Some patents that relate to the internet in some way are:

  • System organization
  • Retrieval and data storage
  • Information processing
  • Electrical communication
  • Cryptography

Software patents are very common patents that are related to the internet. Copyright law traditionally protects software. Patent protection can also be given to computer software. Patent protection is preferred by software developers because patents can protect more than copyrights can. Software must be able to go beyond solving a math problem to receive patent protection, because abstract ideas and algorithms are not patentable, since they are viewed as laws of nature.

Being able to file a patent in what is considered a profitable industry can be very valuable. Having protection on your IP in the Internet of Things can be complicated and bring about lawsuits on patent infringement. Utility patents can become overlapped when devices from the Internet of Things from various manufacturers work together to be able to inter-operate.

Mandy J. Song, Ph.D. and Finnegan partner Kenie Ho said, “even a small IoT system could have thousands of active patents covering a myriad of features,” referring to all the components each device contains. Internet activities will not be governed by a single country's legal regime or single internet-specific legal regime.

Internet Patent Laws in Other Countries

Countries want to keep a few of their country-specific national laws, even though they might borrow some uniform laws. Nations and people all over the world are diverse and have different views on all kinds of matters, such as internet gambling. Online gambling is allowed in some countries and outlawed in other countries. Countries also have varying requirements for protection and privacy of personal data. Countries will most likely always have varying definitions for national laws on personal data collection, privacy, and online gambling.

Compliance with a variety of countries' laws having to do with the internet is not negotiable. This is for those in private parties who want to participate in internet activities legally and transnationally . Those who act on the internet may have laws raised against them, based on which country would place laws against them. Many times the network is common in certain countries, which is why internet laws in many of these countries are not followed.

Internet Patents and Geolocation Changes

Actors cannot limit their online activity in a territorial way due to the network's technical characteristics. It's also hard to identify where certain events and parties happen on the internet, like consumers and where they eat. As geoblocking and geolocation tools have been made, limiting access based on territories and identifying locations has become practical. Geolocation tools have become more popular as evading geolocation has increased.

There no longer seems to be any logic to the argument that activity cannot be limited geographically, because we have no knowledge of where our content is consumed or accessed. In certain countries, agencies and courts have allowed internet actors to hire solutions of low tech value to use as territorial barriers, such as specific language versions and disclaimers. There are many applicable laws that are troubling due to the amount in existence. Personal data protection and data privacy are of utmost importance in these matters.

National data protection laws will apply to any internet actor who has users and customers. These laws differ for each country. In EU (European Union) countries, despite having combined their personal data protection laws, may have regulations specific to certain countries. To partake in business and other activities transnationally, complying with all national data protection laws will be of utmost importance. A patent owner who achieves a patent where all internet laws from all countries are followed at the same time, this person would own a huge percentage of the internet.

If you need help with an internet patent, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel's marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb.