01.21.08

Fixing the Problem at Its Core — USPTO and Lobbying

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents, Standard at 10:59 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It’s impossible to ignore more political aspects

As much as many of us hate politics, it is impossible to escape and ignore the impact corporations have on legislation. On the verge and at risk of approaching touchy subjects, it’s worth clarifying that the Administration is partly responsible for what we have come to know as “patent trolling” and taxation of Free software (through the legitimacy of software patents).

Going against Linux vendors — or any corporation for that matter — is practically difficult. It’s mentally hard to tolerate the very systematic attacks on me across the Web. These don’t help or motivate. Speaking for myself, I was an avid SUSE user and even occasional contributer both at home and at work (no dual/multi-booting, either) just before the Novell deal. So, I never ever had any vendetta against Novell. Au contraire — I was a fan.

“Increasing filtering on the Web might permit Microsoft to intercept ‘illegitimate’ downloads of GNU/Linux.”Over time, it became more clear that if we don’t start speaking with our wallets, then this racketeering scheme we’re seeing will expand until we cannot escape the ‘tax’. Increasing filtering on the Web might permit Microsoft to intercept ‘illegitimate’ downloads of GNU/Linux. One step at a time. Never say never. That’s the worst-case scenario anyway.

I happen to be a developer. My co-editor, Shane, is a distromaster and maintainer. As developers, it is rather obvious that we have to fight hard to tell Microsoft that it’s our code. We wrote it. Microsoft contributed nothing but slurs to it, so why should it be paid for code we wrote for no profit? This underpins the severity of the issue at hand.

If we can still fight against software patents, we should. The USPTO, along those who legislate for it, are simply too corrupted by the money already. There are attempts to rewrite the law in such as way so that neo-guilds will thrive as they did back in the 19th century. Some call it “oligarchy” or a state of monopolies (which isn’t quite the same thing as globalisation).

No Patents in Linux

By changing laws, Free software, Creative Commons-licensed material and political blogs can be verboten, suffocated to death or marginalised until they remain a distant and scarcely-reachable niche. Why else would Lawrence Lessig so abruptly quit his existing efforts and decide to fight corruption instead? He claims this to be at the heart of copyrights madness that assassinates our culture. He intends to spends the next 10 years studying and combating this disease.

The copyrights battle parallels that of Free software. Software development is about creating better tools. The financial side of the business must not hinder further development of better products. But that’s just what you get with software patents. As yesterday’s update about Acacia demonstrates, an entire industry of programmers is nowadays giving room to lawyers who wish to share the profit.

Ware and Financial Systems Innovation, LLC (a subsidiary of Acacia, formerly a subsidiary of TechSearch, the company now known as Global Patent Holdings) have filed 10 patent litigations in the last four years, against 144 defendants. Friedman, Suder & Cooke is representing Ware and Acacia in all of the litigation, most of which are pending either in the Northern District of Georgia or Northern District of Texas. The big filing was one last June against 106 defendants, which I reported on here. While 3 of Ware’s cases were settled, the rest were stayed pending the first reexamination. There are motions in each of those cases to lift the stay. Some are being granted, but in other cases, more trouble brews.

It remains important to consider factors that go beyond the deals which we criticise relentlessly. Everyone is fighting to make the system more favourable in one direction or another and this is a game where money makes the rules. In other words, the wealthy can ensure that laws and amendment are constantly made which maintain and increase the same wealth balance. Linux and open standards are usually fought against not by superior products and formats, but through backroom deals and lobbying of politicians. As such, the slightly political slant will continue to remain relevant. It won’t be overlooked.

“Gates met Noorda briefly in San Francisco to discuss the merger […] before the merger could go forward, he said Novell had to drop its plans to buy Digital Research. […] when Noorda raised the possibility that the Justice Department might try to block a merger between the first and third biggest software companies on the planet, Gates responded, “Don’t worry, we know how to handle the federal government.” […] Gates denied every saying such a thing”

BILL GATES and the Race to Control Cyberspace

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Erosion of Communities, Ascent of Corporate-Industrial Fake Communities

    Despite the attempts to manipulate/trick developers (and sometimes users) into becoming unpaid workforce of for-profit companies, there's an exodus back to real communities, which aren't subjected to the fury of wealthy shareholders who utterly dislike or simply don't care for software freedom



  2. The Corporate 'Left' and the Open Source Pseudo 'Movement'

    President Biden may not be as bad as his predecessor, but that hardly means very much; software freedom is still threatened, along with many other things



  3. Links 22/1/2021: pfSense Plus, Endless OS Foundation, and Many Laptops With GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  4. The Linux Foundation is Trying to Obscure Racism Using Microsoft-Inspired Tactics (Vouchers Disguised as Actual Money)

    The Linux Foundation and its PR stunts don’t help combat racism; one might argue that the Foundation is leveraging racism, which prevails in the US, to paint itself as benevolent and caring (offering immaterial things and self-serving press releases)



  5. InteLeaks – Part XXVII: 'Pulling a Nokia' on Intel (Outsourcing to Microsoft)

    The recommendation of an Intel marriage with Microsoft (even in units that deal mostly with Linux) is an insulting slap across the face of developers employed there; we take a look at recommendations made to IoTG (Intel) by a firm with Microsoft orientation



  6. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 21, 2021

    IRC logs for Thursday, January 21, 2021



  7. InteLeaks – Part XXVI: Harbor Research is Horrible 'Research', Lacking Actual Technical Background

    Having looked at the members of staff of Harbor Research (individually), it seems clearer now why they have an affinity for Microsoft and why they're directing Intel to liaise with Microsoft and become a prisoner of Microsoft (even in areas where Microsoft is increasingly irrelevant)



  8. Links 21/1/2021: Raspberry Pi Pico, Ubuntu 21.04 Picks GNOME 3.38, KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta

    Links for the day



  9. How a Newly Inaugurated President Biden Can Advance Software Freedom (If He Actually Wishes to Do So)

    Techrights has 'Four Suggestions' to President Biden, the 46th 'front end' of American plutocracy



  10. InteLeaks – Part XXV: Intel's Brain Drain Leads to Unusual Measures

    As the company once known as 'chipzilla' loses its relevance and dominance in the market it's reaching out to retired people, trying to get them back onboard



  11. Hey Hi (AI) is Just a Trojan Horse for Illegal Software Patents, According to EPO Management and Litigation Firms It's in Bed With

    The longtime pushers or the lobby of patent profiteers just carry on pushing for software patents, nowadays latching onto the inane and unwarranted media hype around Hey Hi (AI) — a hype wave that was co-opted by EPO management to grant unlawful patents



  12. The Central Staff Representatives (CSC) of the EPO Are Petitioning to End the Assault on EPO Staff

    The EPO, just one month after the staff went on strike, is about to receive a compelling petition to stop the assault on EPO staff



  13. InteLeaks – Part XXIV: Love for Microsoft, Not for Free Software or Whatever Replaces Microsoft

    Intel is basing its big decisions on buzzwords and firms that master buzzwords; it's sad that instead of listening to Intel's own (in-house) engineers it's relying on a bunch of clowns who push 'Clown Computing' and 'apps' and 'UX'...



  14. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 20, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 20, 2021



  15. Links 21/1/2021: Google Tightens the Screws on Chromium, VideoLAN VLC 3.0.12

    Links for the day



  16. IBM Panics and Resorts to 'Customer Retention' Tactics With Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)

    IBM 'frees' RHEL but with limitations that can restrict growth of small companies (or subject them to financial barriers, originally unforeseen)



  17. Recent Techrights Articles About President Joe Biden

    Instead of writing yet more stuff about the latest US president, let's look back at what we wrote in recent weeks/months



  18. Links 20/1/2021: LibreOffice 7.1 RC2 and the RHEL Contingency

    Links for the day



  19. InteLeaks – Part XXIII: Intel Paying for Bogus 'Research' 'Insights' Which Merely Seek to Justify Outsourcing to Microsoft and Imposing Microsoft's Proprietary Software on Free Software Developers

    Intel's preference for Microsoft monopoly (an imposed/top-down decision) was seemingly certified by so-called 'consultants' and 'analysts' from the outside rather than the inside, basically manufacturing a false perception of consent after managers had already made up their minds



  20. Suppressed Facts of the Free Software Movement and Its Community of Volunteers – Part V: How FSF Secrecy Ended Up Insulting People, Alienating Trans Developers

    Having just uploaded this introductory video, we delve into the backstory or the real reason the FSF sank into somewhat of a crisis with the trans community almost half a decade ago



  21. InteLeaks – Part XXII: Bubbles and Buzzwords, No Substance at Intel's Internet of Things (IoT) Group (IOTG)

    The video above is continuation of the previous part about a document full of superficial buzzwords (not technical jargon anywhere), in effect recommending to managers that they blindly follow trends and cargo cults (such as Clown Computing) and not what’s most suitable for technical excellence



  22. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 19, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 19, 2021



  23. Links 20/1/2021: WireGuard for pfSense and New US President

    Links for the day



  24. Links 19/1/2021: Krita 4.4.2 Released and JingOS Hype

    Links for the day



  25. Team UPC Keeps Pretending That UPCA Can Still be Resurrected (Even Without the UK, Which is Strictly a Requirement)

    The latest distortion of facts regarding the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Agreement (UPCA) as seen from the lens of people who seek to profit from such distortion



  26. 'Ethical Source' is Not Ethical and Not a Movement But a Misguided Self-Serving PR Stunt

    Something which is neither enforceable nor ethical is being promoted by profoundly unethical media in the pockets of large corporations



  27. InteLeaks – Part XXI: Intel Seeking Advice From a Bunch of Clowns (Harbor 'Research')

    A firm called Harbor 'Research' is making dubious recommendations to Intel; as shown in the above video, there's also an obsession with buzzwords (typically suggestive of a lack of technical grasp/understanding)



  28. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 18, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, January 18, 2021



  29. The US Election Was Not Rigged, But the Nomination Process Was (Undermined to Maintain Control by Oligarchy)

    Cheating/driving the left out of the Democratic Party seems like a longstanding tradition and we know who stands to gain from it; moreover, problems remain in the voting process because it's controlled by secret code of companies like Microsoft (in spite of the openwashing)



  30. InteLeaks – Part XX: Redacted (for Names Only) Release of Intel File About Developer eXperience (DX) Meddling in GNU/Linux

    Today (or tonight) we release the first 'phase' of InteLeaks in a sensibly redacted form; coming up next is a surprise from Team Microsoft


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts