On March 9, 1999 Vice President Al Gore claimed that he invented the internet...here is his quote: "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet. "
While he may think he had a part in creating the Internet, the truth is that the first true digital connection between 2 parties via a wired device was achieved through a telegraph system in the early 19th century.
The first computer Internet was established on 29 Oct 1969 via the ARPA-net network.
The Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Project's Agency (DARPA), was called the ARPA-net, and the original network connected 4 research establishments; UCLA, Stamford Research Institute, UCSB, and the University of Utah. The ARPA-net was an experiment to try to establish 'inter-netted' or 'inter-networked' communications between several distinct computers or nodes to comprise a network. The term 'inter-netted communications' or 'inter-networked communications' eventually became shortened to just “Internet”.
The concept of an internet of linked computers is something that can not be patented, just like you cannot patent a postal system. What can be patented are specific components, designs and concepts of an internet system.
The first major patent issued to the internet was for an information 'packet' system
Tasks can be done on a network of multiple computers interconnected by communication links. At each of the computers, Knowbot programs may be received and transmitted on the communication links, and may be stored and created; and execution of the tasks associated with the Knowbot programs may be advanced...
Larry G. Roberts
Bob Kahn and Vint Cerf