Google's patent license for VP8 [was: Google WebM?]

Matthew Flaschen matthew.flaschen at
Fri May 21 19:41:44 UTC 2010

Chris Travers wrote:
> On Fri, May 21, 2010 at 10:06 AM, Matthew Flaschen
> <matthew.flaschen at> wrote:
>> So this license (separate from the modified BSD software license at
>> applies to any
>> implementation of the specification.
>> Matt Flaschen
> It's also potentially a broader license grant.  I'm wondering,
> however, why Google didn't just point to the specification in the
> patent grant.  "This implementation" strikes me as ambiguous after
> changes have been applied.

There's two patent grants.

1. One is part of the software license
(  This license (including
both copyright and patent licenses) terminates if you allege Google's
implementation infringes any patent.

2. One is a license for the specification
( and applies to all
implementations.  This terminates if you allege any WebM implementation

I see no ambiguity.  *Any* implementation of WebM, regardless of code
source, is protected by the spec patent license.

The only important point is that if you allege Google's implementation
(or code within) infringes a patent, you lose the software copyright and
all patent licenses.  If you allege another implementation infringes,
you only lose patent rights.


Matt Flaschen

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