[Air-l] What is Instant Messaging

jeremy hunsinger jhuns at vt.edu
Tue Dec 17 14:37:14 PST 2002

a problem is that online awareness is the unix command who, the buddy 
list is part of a shell script with your user names, messaging is talk  
or irc, so this is probably a bad patent, beyond that irc has notify 
which is a form of buddy list and online awareness.  the novelty of IM 
is in the way it is marketed through a different interface, i think 
this becomes clear when you start looking at ims like fire or 
everybuddy which operate across multiple standards sets, like irc, aim, 
yim, etc. In short, i would be running the prior art flag right now.  
btw do you have the patent number on this so i can turn it in to patent 
On Tuesday, December 17, 2002, at 03:24 PM, Quentin (Gad) Jones wrote:

> ******************
> The U.S. patent office has approved the ICQ inventors' patent on their
> technology for instant messaging via the Internet, HA'ARETZ reported.
> The office also granted a patent on the entrepreneurs' technology for
> the transmission of instant messages over cellular networks. America
> Online, which bought ICQ with its owner Mirabilis in 1998 for $400
> million, can file patent infringement suits against Yahoo! and 
> Microsoft
> which develop and market similar software for the transmission of
> instant messages, or, alternatively, can demand the companies pay
> royalties. An estimated 400 million people worldwide use instant
> messaging, about 135 million of them ICQ users.
> ******************
> While the patent office often gets things wrong (e.g. the hoo ha about
> Amazon.com's one click patent) this approval does suggest that
> IM=(online awareness + buddy list + over TCP/IP protocal + messaging)
> and is something relatively new.
> Quentin
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jeremy hunsinger
jhuns at vt.edu
on the ibook
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