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Facebook draws legal fire on patent claims

Is Facebook heading for a tumble in the US courts?

You know what they say about imitation, flattery and all that? Well, in the case of Facebook, the two seem not to be connected, after the social-networking giant was hit by two US lawsuits this week.

Most serious of the pair of allegations seems to be one from Phoenix Media/Communications, which says Facebook has used a technique for building and sharing personal pages on a website that it patented in 2001.

Human relationships

The other comes from Japanese company Mekiki and states that Facebook has trampled on its patent-related toes over its "human relationships registering system", which, presumably, means the uber-SNS's 'friending' technique.

Mekiki owns a small social-networking site called Samurai Time that features the unusual mission statement: "We would like you to join us in this endeavour of building the social infrastructure that allows people in the world to live in peace by connecting our individual spirits and souls".

Not much to say

So far, Facebook has spoken only about the Phoenix case that is currently before a court in Boston, saying it is "without merit and will be fought vigorously".

Via Washington Post