Minecraft gets hit with patent lawsuit

Minecraft has sold a lot of copies in its PC, Android and most recently its Xbox 360 incarnations. Now it looks like one company would like to get a piece of that action, but in a way that doesn't please the game's creator, Markus "Notch" Perrson.

In a post on his official Twitter page this weekend, Perrson admitted that the game is being sued for patent infringement. He later posted the actual lawsuit on his site. The claim is being made by Uniloc, a known "patent troll" who has in the past filed similar lawsuits against companies such as Microsoft, Sony, Square Enix, Electronic Arts, and Gameloft.

The actual patent which Uniloc claims is being violated is "System and Method for Preventing Unauthorized Access to Electronic Data." The lawsuit applies to the Android version of Minecraft, which the lawsuit refers to incorrectly as "Mindcraft."

In a post on his personal blog, "Notch" rails against the concepts of patenting software as a whole, saying, " ... there is no way in hell you can convince me that it’s beneficial for society to not share ideas. Ideas are free." On his Twitter page, he has vowed to fight this lawsuit from Uniloc, saying, "If needed, I will throw piles of money at making sure they don't get a cent."

Minecraft has now sold over 6.7 million copies in its PC version and it still sells between 10,000 to 12,000 copies a day on that platform over two years since the first alpha version was launched. The Android version, launched in 2011, has sold between 500,000 and 1 million units. Last week, Notch tweeted that the Xbox 360 version, released just two and a half months ago, has now sold over three million copies.

Source: Notch's Twitter page

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