• http://nicdagreek.typepad.com/my_weblog/ J Nicholas Gross

    A few things:
    1) it isn’t clear that they are “patenting” anything specific to the NF interface, and may be simply using it as an example to build from;
    2) even if they are it is possible that Newsforce simply assigned what rights they had in the interface to Business Wire;
    3) Under the patent laws, you have 1 year to file an application based on an invention that was already publicly used or disclosed;
    4) the Newsforce article you cite is from 2006, and the patent was filed in 2007 so BW could well be within the allowable period.

  • http://nicdagreek.typepad.com/my_weblog/ J Nicholas Gross

    If you check here:
    http://assignments.uspto.gov/assignments/q?db=pat&qt=pat&reel=&frame=&pat=7970754&pub=&asnr=&asnri=&asne=&asnei=&asns=

    you can see that Newsforce indeed did own the patent originally; but they assigned all rights to BW

    part of your mystery is solved

  • http://www.rubenstein.com Nataliya Yakushev

    I personally avoid using businesswire press release distribution for SEO as they insert their “smart links” into release. It’s a piece of code they add to each hyperlink: <a href="http://cts.businesswire.com/ct/CT?id=smartlink&amp.

    I still don't understand what to patent here. Every wire has copy/paste visual optimization system built-in.

  • http://www.seobythesea.com/ Bill Slawski

    Yousaf tweeted me about this earlier today, and I had a chance to look over it.

    I vaguely remember seeing it when it was granted in June, and skimming over it and proceeding to ignore it after reading the claims.

    There are some issues with the methods described by the claims that would make me want to stay away from the approach being used, so I’m not really bothered that someone has tried to patent work processes that many of us use, and have been using for years, to provide services to our clients.

    One of those is the idea of comparing the frequency of words within the press releases to a frequency of terms used within a corpus of ” historical data obtained from one or more of the online media distribution channels.” That part of the analysis might help the document rank better within that pool of historic data documents, but probably not within documents found within a search engine’s index.

    Regardless, much of what is described as SEO in the patent is old, and the patent seems more for the sake of patenting the self help process, and the behind the scenes analysis.

  • http://www.seobythesea.com/ Bill Slawski

    Hi Danny,

    The two patents that you’ve listed in postscript 4 haven’t been granted, and are still just pending patent applications. It’s possible that they may not make it to the point where they are granted.

    There are some granted patents involving SEO that you might find interesting.

    For example, Yahoo was granted a patent that would automate SEO:

    Automated System to Improve Search Engine Optimization on Web Pages

    Intuit was granted a patent for SEO as well:

    Method and system for performing search engine optimizations

    Here’s IBM’s patent showing their variation on SEO:

    Search Engine Optimization Using Page Anchors

    Not sure that I’m worried about any of them taking away business from SEOs as the patents are written.

  • http://www.bowlerhat.co.uk marcusmiller

    This feels like some bluster to use in marketing the PR optimization system rather than anything for your average SEO to worry about.

    I can almost see it now:

    “First patented system for optimising your press releases for increased visibility in search engine result pages”

    Not something I will lose much sleep over!