Patexia. Contest

CONTEST

Competed

Problem

Patexia is looking for descriptions of a web-based system that allows a user to convert and transfer reward points between two separate user accounts, each of which is valued in a different denomination. For example, this system would allow a user to use a website to initiate the conversion and transfer of credit card reward points from a first account to hotel reward points or airline frequent flyer miles in a second account.

To the extent descriptions the rewards points system described above are not found, Patexia would also be interested in descriptions of a web-based system that allows a user to convert and transfer currency between two separate user accounts, each of which is valued in a different denomination. For example, this system would allow a user to use a website to initiate the conversion and transfer, for example British Pounds from a first account to US Dollars in a second account. 

Submitted documents describing this system must be:

  • filed or published before 06/23/1999
  • not on the known references list

Entities often reward consumers for utilizing their services with loyalty points, such as Frequent Flyer miles, Credit Card Points, and/or hotel points. These points have restrictions when it comes to redemption.  A way to increase customer satisfaction is by making loyalty points more flexible by allowing a user to convert his/her points from one type to another.

The entire submission should describe a method of transferring rewards points by:

  • letting the user start the transfer from a web page on the Internet and select the amount
  • deducting the amount from the originating account
  • converting the amount using a predetermined conversion rate
  • depositing the converted amount into the receiving account
  • compensating the service provider of the receiving account so that the value of the transferred reward points is also transmitted from the originating service provider to the service receiving provider (in addition to the balance that was transferred)

This contest is for a prior art search for US Patent 8,423,402, with a focus on independent claim 5.


Modified Rules:

  • $2,000 of the prize will only be eligible for submissions that have verified answers to questions 2 and 6.

Contest icon is by Egorova Valentina via the Noun Project.

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Questions

#QuestionValue
1Is the reference either a US patent filed, a foreign patent published, or a non-patent document published before June 23rd, 1999? T/F
2Does the reference show a user transferring rewards points between 2 separate accounts of the user that would otherwise be incompatible with each other (e.g. different companies, competing services)? 15
3Does the reference show that the user can start transfer by visiting a web page on the Internet and selecting an amount to transfer? 40
4Does the reference further show that during the transfer the amount is withdrawn from (a) the originating account, converted using a predetermined conversion rate, and then deposited into (b) the receiving account? 10
5Does the reference further show that the combined balance in (b) the receiving account can be redeemed for an item by the user, regardless whether it was part of the original balance or part of the transfer? 5
6Does the reference show that the service provider for (b) the receiving account is compensated for the value of the rewards points that were transferred by the service provider for (a) the originating account? 30

Additional Notes

Prior Art Search

This is a Prior Art Search contest aimed at determining if a patent idea was known and publicly available before a patent was filed.

+5 bonus points will be awarded for non-patent literature and for foreign language references.

This contest will close on Sunday, December 13th, 2015 at 11:59 PM PST.

Please review the Contest Rules. For more information on how to submit to this Contest type, please read the Intro to Prior Art Search page.