The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) just invalidated claims made by Personal Audio, the long time podcast patent troll. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) led the fight against the troll and prevailed this week after years of struggle in the podcasting field.
Personal Audio was making claims that its failed 1990 cassettes-by-mail outfit was the same thing as episodic podcasts. In 2013, the company began contacting podcasts and demanding licensing fees, including Adam Corolla and major tv networks. The EFF launched the Save Podcasting campaign that was backed by contributors to help fight against Personal Audio. The EFF was able to show in petitions that the company did not invent anything new before they filed the patent application and that podcasting had been going on for years before. We have yet to see if those podcasters who paid up will be paid back by the patent troll. Hopefully this is just the start of the fall of patent trolls; only time will only tell.