Pontifex maximus writes "Friendster has said that as of this week, it has a patent covering online social networks. It applied for the patent before the company's downward spiral and recent growth." From the article: "'It's way too early to say' whether the company would pursue licenses and litigation from its competitors, Friendster President Kent Lindstrom told RedHerring.com. 'We'll do what we can to protect our intellectual property.' Though the Friendster patent could be challenged in either the patent system or the courts, opponents would face an uphill battle. 'Once the patent is issued there is a presumption of validity that follows with it,' said attorney Bill Heinze of Thomas, Kayden, Horstemeyer & Risley."