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Apple has filed a patent application for transferring “used” digital goods like MP3s, e-books and apps from one user to another, similar to a patent for a “secondary market for digital objects” awarded to Amazon just last month. The filing indicates that Apple may be thinking about setting up its own marketplace or lending library for the transfer of user-owned digital content – one that original content creators and owners could get behind. Both patents describe systems where a user could transfer a piece of digital content (i.e., an e-book or film) to another user in exchange for payment (or perhaps another item), not unlike Amazon’s third-party marketplace for used physical goods. There are two big differences between Apple’s and Amazon’s systems. Apple proposes that an (unspecified) portion of the proceeds from the sale of a piece of digital content go to the original creator or publisher of the content.
Read the full story at Mashable.