03.27.07

Oracle to Join Open Invention Network

Posted in Action, Intellectual Monopoly, Oracle, Patents at 8:25 am by Shane Coyle

From the attaboy department

Today it is expected that the Open Invention Network will announce a new member, Oracle. No word on exactly which patents Oracle will be making available to OIN…

On March 27, Oracle and the Open Invention Network (OIN) will announce that Oracle will become an OIN licensee. By doing this, Oracle opens the doors to making some of its patents available royalty-free to any company, institution, or individual that agrees not to assert its patents against Linux.

OIN members — which currently include IBM, NEC, Novell, Philips, Red Hat, and Sony — agree to assign software patents that might affect Linux to the OIN. These patents can then be used by anyone in Linux without having to pay any royalty fees or having to worry about future law suits.

Regular readers will know that I am a little critical of Oracle from time to time, so it’s very pleasing to be able to write a positive entry on them. Of course, I see the whole concept of stockpiling legally invalid software patents on behalf of GNU/Linux as just a symbolic effort, but it’s nice to see nonetheless.

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4 Comments

  1. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 27, 2007 at 11:51 am

    Gravatar

    When OSDL tried this, Stallman said they were doing more harm than good. The FSF’s reaction would be interesting if it’s made vocal.

  2. Stephen said,

    March 27, 2007 at 1:22 pm

    Gravatar

    Pity you don’t mention Novell as a founding member and the eCommerce patents (amongst others) that they contributed to the network! Balance in all things make all things a little more fair.

  3. shane said,

    March 27, 2007 at 5:52 pm

    Gravatar

    Um, the quote already mentions Novell, this isn’t an article about the uselessness of OIN, and if Novell believes the OIN approach is the right one – why negotiate their own peace with Microsoft rather than ‘hang’ with the rest of the community?

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 27, 2007 at 8:46 pm

    Gravatar

    Here is an blog that says it well:

    http://www.businessreviewonline.com/os/archives/2007/03/oracle_shows_mi.html

    I suppose a suitable analogy can be made to say that Novell surrendered (on behalf of others as well) while Oracle shows willingness to fight for Linux.

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