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Bilibili: Another Chinese Company Joins the Open Invention Network

Bilbili becomes the third large China-based video centered social network to throw its patents into Open Invention Network’s kitty this year.

bilbili twitter header
A portion of Bilbili’s Twitter header, evidently referencing the company’s Nasdaq listing in March, 2018.

On Tuesday, the Durham, North Carolina-based Open Invention Network announced that the Chinese firm Bilbili has thrown its patents into pot to protect the Linux system from patent trolls by becoming an OIN member. Shanghai-based Bilbili operates a video sharing website that focuses on animation, comics, and games. The site has 237 million active monthly users and 20.9 million paying users, according to the data company Statista.

This is the third large China-based video platform to join OIN this year. In June, Kuaishou, a short-video platform with a billion monthly users, signed on, followed in August by ByteDance, the company behind TikTok, also with about a billion monthly active users.

“Bilibili is a diverse, open, and innovative cultural platform,” Bilibili’s VP, Wang Hao, said in a statement. “All the time, we are committed to opening and sharing technologies and providing positive motivation in the innovativion field of playback transmission, interactive entertainment, and cloud-native ecology through open source projects.

“Linux System software and open source technologies are important software infrastructures that promote business developments,” he added. “Our participation in the OIN community demonstrates our consistent and ongoing commitment to shared innovation. In the future, we will also firmly support Linux’s open source innovation.”

For those who don’t know, the OIN is a patent non-aggression consortium. By becoming a member, Bilbili agrees to cross-license all of its patents for use within what OIN calls the “Linux system,” which includes core Linux components and adjacent open source technologies, such as Ansible, Kubernetes, Nagios, ChromeOS, containers, blockchains, the Android Open Source Project, and the exFAT file system.

The last expansion of the Linux System brought the total number of components in the system to about 4,000, in addition to core Linux.

The OIN also has its own portfolio of patents, which are also cross licensed free-of-cost to member organizations. OIN also makes the patents it holds available to it members to use to cross sue any outside entity that sues them over patent infringement within their use of the Linux System.

It goes without saying that OIN is pleased to have a new member on board.

“Video is transforming the way people communicate, entertain, and receive information,” Keith Bergelt, CEO of Open Invention Network said in a statement. “Thanks to its continuous investment in research and development, Bilibili is creating an immersive video experience for its growing user community in China. By joining OIN, Bilibili is doing its part to mitigate global patent risk for OSS. It is committed to collaborative innovation and patent non-aggression in OSS.”

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