Twitter introduces Innovators Patent Agreement, vows to not abuse patent system

When it comes to patents Twitter doesn't want to be part of the problem. Or, at least doesn't want you to think it's part of the problem and its new IPA (that's Innovators Patent Agreement, not India Pale Ale) outlines how it plans to stay above the fray and avoid abusing the system. The document is a relatively simple contract between Twitter and its employees that says any patents related to their work will be used for "defensive" purposes only. Meaning that the microblogging service has no plans to take one of its engineers designs and hammer Google in court because a function of Google+ is similar to a feature of Twitter. Almost as important, these restrictions are bound to the patents themselves -- not the company. So, should Twitter ever sell off its patent quiver in an effort to boost its bottom line, the purchasers would still be bound by the IPA and unable to use them in offensive litigation without the inventors approval. Twitter intends to officially implement the agreement later this year and it will apply not only to all of its patents going forward, but will be retroactively applied to its existing stable. Check out the more coverage link to read the IPA in full.