One of our customers dropped us a line to let us know about a patent application by Microsoft lodged with the US post Office for Advertisment within CAPTCHAs or as we like to call it Your CAPTCHA. Indeed when you look at the patent application it reads very similar to our existing product!
Microsoft visualisation – US Patents
Our own Your CAPTCHA Advert
Does Microsofts Patent just squeeze us out of the market?
The question for us is what to do about this, we are not a large firm and obviously a straight fight with Microsoft lawyers is a no no, nor do we believe we were the first to come up with the idea (indeed it was discussed as far back as 2005, brand CATPTHCA), though I believe we are the first to market the product which has been in our product range for over 9 months and is in use in the wild, like several other companies we have put time into research the benefits of non direct call to action marketing and brand reinforcement.
Positives to the Microsoft patent?
What we can take from this is we are the first to market of an idea even the larger companies are now thinking about! Your CAPTCHA advert has not been in active development for a few months now so perhaps its time to take it to stage 2, we will be studying the patent to determine if it actually would cover what Your CAPTCHA advert does.
By the way your CAPTCHA advert is $24 but you can buy it for just $15 from our products page!
What do people think should we simply abandon Your CAPTCHA Advert to its fate?