Imx Fix in my experience
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February 26, 2003 1:11 AM

Amazon, and more specifically, Jeff Bezos has a new patent under his belt that, in the simplest of terms is...
A method and system for conducting an electronic discussion relating to a topic.
When I first heard that from a friend of mine, I thought the blogosphere was the target, and that Daypop might have a new number one item. Well, as of this moment, it's not the number one item at Daypop, and the blogosphere is going to be ok, because...
What is claimed is:
1. A method in a computer system of a non-participant for starting a discussion relating to an item offered for sale...
So, as long as I don't ever offer an item for sale as a blog posting, I'll be ok? That still seems overly simplistic, doesn't it... After all, I'm just one person, and I don't have any significant sales thruput (read: none at all).

My guess is that Epinions is the one that needs to be nervous about this. The vagueness of "discussion relating to an item offered for sale" blankets the Epinions business model (even if they don't sell the stuff themselves, the discussion is related to a product for sale).

I'm amazed that Amazon can patent things like this, or more to the point, that the US Patent Office allows it to happen. The last patent that seemed absurd was one click ordering that Apple actually licensed, which no doubt is making my Macintosh habit more expensive. [via Slashdot]