Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Application Security

Facebook Patents News Feeds

Social networking site claims exclusive method for organizing and posting members' news updates.

Facebook has received a patent for an online activity that's at the core of social networking—sharing news feeds with friends and colleagues.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office awarded the patent, titled "Dynamically providing a news feed about users of a social network," on Tuesday, government records show.

"The method includes generating news items regarding activities associated with a user of a social network environment and attaching an informational link associated with at least one of the activities, to at least one of the news items," the patent description reads.

"As well as limiting access to the news items to a predetermined set of viewers and assigning an order to the news items," it continues.

Depending on how it's interpreted and enforced—either by the courts or Facebook itself—the patent's existence could mean trouble for other social networks, such as floundering MySpace, that also allow members to share news updates.

Among the patent's inventors, according to USPTO records, is none other than Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Records also indicate Facebook originally applied for the patent, now officially called U.S. Patent No. 7,669,123, in August of 2006.

The patent covers 25 claims in total.

"A user (the viewing user) of a social network may choose to view a news feed about another user (the subject user) in the social network," the patent's summary reads, in part.

"A list of the subject user's activities within the social network may be drawn from various databases within the social network. The news feed is automatically generated based on the list of activities," the summary continues.

Facebook has yet to comment publicly on its plans for the patent, or whether it plans to challenge other social networks that let users post news updates.

Attend InformationWeek's Virtualization Virtual Event to learn advanced strategies on how a top-to-bottom transformation will increase system availability and ensure better business continuity. It happens Wednesday, March 3. Find out more (registration required).

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 5/28/2020
The Problem with Artificial Intelligence in Security
Dr. Leila Powell, Lead Security Data Scientist, Panaseer,  5/26/2020
10 iOS Security Tips to Lock Down Your iPhone
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  5/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
How Cybersecurity Incident Response Programs Work (and Why Some Don't)
This Tech Digest takes a look at the vital role cybersecurity incident response (IR) plays in managing cyber-risk within organizations. Download the Tech Digest today to find out how well-planned IR programs can detect intrusions, contain breaches, and help an organization restore normal operations.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-13173
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
Initialization of the pcoip_credential_provider in Teradici PCoIP Standard Agent for Windows and PCoIP Graphics Agent for Windows versions 19.11.1 and earlier creates an insecure named pipe, which allows an attacker to intercept sensitive information or possibly elevate privileges via pre-installing...
CVE-2019-6342
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
An access bypass vulnerability exists when the experimental Workspaces module in Drupal 8 core is enabled. This can be mitigated by disabling the Workspaces module. It does not affect any release other than Drupal 8.7.4.
CVE-2020-11082
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
In Kaminari before 1.2.1, there is a vulnerability that would allow an attacker to inject arbitrary code into pages with pagination links. This has been fixed in 1.2.1.
CVE-2020-5357
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
Dell Dock Firmware Update Utilities for Dell Client Consumer and Commercial docking stations contain an Arbitrary File Overwrite vulnerability. The vulnerability is limited to the Dell Dock Firmware Update Utilities during the time window while being executed by an administrator. During this time wi...
CVE-2020-13660
PUBLISHED: 2020-05-28
CMS Made Simple through 2.2.14 allows XSS via a crafted File Picker profile name.