In the blog linked from the summary, the blog writer uses the word 'always' for the spread of an idea. The quotes from the director of research Szymanski do not show 'always' in that sense. As for the age of the hyperbole Universe comment, it seems to be merely emphasizing that no progress is made toward person to person spreading of the given belief, when the current adoption is underneath the 10% value. He could have equivalently said "until the cows come home."
It seems to me this is a simple diffusion problem. A person's belief might be influenced if N or more people in that person's immediate circle of contacts (call it T people) hold the given belief. The researchers say that N/T > 0.1 will spread the belief by person to person diffusion, less will not. This means that if you wish to introduce a new belief into society, you and your cohorts must work to get to that fraction, whereupon thereafter, it will take on a life of its own without your continuing effort to promote it. Since the introduction of a belief by diffusion increases the fraction, it will proceed exponentially. In this context, that perhaps justifies the calling the spread "rapid".
True or false? Who knows. This was a blog of quotes, not a research article. Perhaps if 10% of slash dotters come to believe in it, everyone will.
Each member of the engineering staff, at any engineering oriented corporation, is highly motivated to patent something - anything. So long as it has a whiff of possible application, it will go into the mill, if for no other reason than to prevent some other company from patenting it. This patent could be just such. This infrared communications port is only practical if the end-user has opted to allow it. As pointed out several times in this forum, simple filters should easily defeat it.
I also suspect, based on the concert anti-bootlegging example in the patent disclosure, it is a shiny concept to dangle in front of the RIAA cats, that has no real effect. On the other hand, when the end-user chooses to let it work, there might well be some enhanced reality applications.
It is true that DVD players "evolved" from not having geographical restrictions to having built in limits, simply by an industry wide agreement. Similarly, it would be interesting if industry wide agreements lead to built in camera overrides. But whereas the DVD player manufacturers were dependent on the goodwill of the media producers, the camera manufacturers are not. The RIAA and friends may be able to push on devices that are both cameras and players, but the manufacturers of pure photo and video recorders will have no reason to bend to such demands, in the absence of laws, of course. Make sure now, before it even gets started, that your congressman knows that there are lines not to be crossed.