Open Invention Network (OIN) recently extended the Linux ecosystem with the signing of Mozilla as a licensee. By becoming a licensee, Mozilla, the developer of leading software applications including the popular Firefox web browser, has joined the growing list of organizations that recognize the importance of participating in a substantial community of Linux supporters and leveraging the Open Invention Network to further spur open source innovation.
Open Invention Network is a collaborative enterprise that enables innovation in open source and an increasingly vibrant ecosystem around Linux. It does this by acquiring and licensing patents, influencing behaviors and policy and protecting the integrity of the ecosystem through strategic programs such as Linux Defenders. Open Invention Network was launched in 2005 by IBM, NEC, Novell, Philips, Red Hat and Sony, and has received supplemental financial support from Canonical.
Patents owned by Open Invention Network are available royalty-free to any company, institution or individual that agrees not to assert its patents against the Linux System. This enables OIN licensees to continue to make significant corporate and capital expenditure investments in Linux - helping to fuel economic growth. By developing a web of Linux developers, distributors, sellers, resellers and end users that license its patent portfolio, Open Invention Network is creating a supportive and shielded ecosystem to ensure the growth and adoption of Linux.
OIN has a broad portfolio of patents, including patents held by nominees on its behalf. These patents are available to all licensees as part of the patent portfolio that OIN is creating around and in support of Linux. Its license agreement can be found here.