EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

03.13.08

Europe to Increase Use of Free Software, Lobbyists Try to Force Software Patents Onto Europe

Posted in Courtroom, Europe, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 7:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft’s headache continues, underhanded tactics ensue

A press release from europa.eu reaffirms and substantiates what many knew would come. [via Glyn Moody]

EU: European Commission to increase its use of Open Source

[...]

The European Commission will take a more pro-active approach to its own use of Open Source.

In a document published last week, the EC states among others that the Commission will prefer Open Source software for its new IT projects: “For all new development, where deployment and usage is foreseen by parties outside of the Commission Infrastructure, Open Source Software will be the preferred development and deployment platform.”

According to the document, the EC is an early adopter of Open Source. A first strategy document on this type of software was presented in 2000. However, it is for the first time the European Commission publishes such a document. Valerie Rampie, spokesperson or Siim Kallas, the European commissioner who is responsible for administrative affairs, said the publication of the strategy is “mainly for information purposes”.

Need it also be mentioned that, according to this new article, the US Navy is now dumping proprietary software and will focus only on free/open source software? [via Matt Asay]

“The days of proprietary technology must come to an end,” [Vice Admiral Mark Edwards, deputy chief of naval operations for communications] said. “We will no longer accept systems that couple hardware, software and data.”

When Steve Ballmer said just two weeks ago that Microsoft’s number one competitor is Linux, he probably meant it. This has actually been said for many years, albeit reluctantly.

“Microsoft will make every possible attempt to limit or illegalise Linux.”So, how will Microsoft responds? Will it embrace Linux? Will it resort to more FUD tactics or find another brigadier like SCO? More likely, Microsoft will continue to try to change the law and also spend on manufacturing precedences. Microsoft will make every possible attempt to limit or illegalise Linux.

Digital Majority continues to take a close look at the situation in Europe. Several articles seem to suggest that the lobbyists are busy. Very busy. Here is one obnoxious report from Ireland.

O’Connor is a leading expert on European software patents and explained to his audience, which comprised 250 technology transfer and intellectual property experts from a range of companies and universities including Yahoo!, Microsoft, MIT, UC Berkeley and Stanford, why software patent applications fail in Europe, and what needs to be done to resolve these problems.

On the issue of ambiguities in the law getting misused, see this article.

The problem arose because the EPC and the derivative UK Patents Act excluded from patentability “methods of doing business and computer programs ‘as such’”. It took a number of stages to get a consistent interpretation of what was allowed. The problem arose because a computer program is often a convenient way of implementing a set of instructions which produce a technical advance (technical effect in patent-speak). Early on it was decided both in the EPO and in the UK courts that where the computer program is used to implement a method which produces a technical advantage, the process would be patentable.

Lastly, see how a fight against software patents gets described as a loss in the Guardian.

The chief judge in the landmark European Microsoft antitrust case highlighted the doubts of critics on Wednesday, saying in his first public comments on the decision he hopes it will not discourage investors.
The 13-judge Grand Chamber of the European Union’s second highest court handed down a sweeping ruling in September, upholding a tough European Commission decision saying Microsoft abused its dominance of PC operating systems to crush rivals. It also endorsed a 497-million euro fine.

[...]

Vesterdorf said that many critics believe the decision weakened patent law and the rights of patent holders to do as they wished with their intellectual property.
There was no doubt that the CFI had significantly enhanced the authority of the European Commission beyond its rulings earlier cases, he said, giving it “a wide margin of appreciation.”

Mind the use of the word “investors”, which is very different from the word “inventors”. Patents are increasingly seen as a financial tool which serves not the developers but serves those who capitalise and profit while they marginalise and elbow rivals off their ‘intellectual territories’. In light of that last article bemoaning the EU’s decision, consider the quote below.

“The government is not trying to destroy Microsoft, it’s simply seeking to compel Microsoft to obey the law. It’s quite revealing that Mr. Gates equates the two.”

Government Official, Washington Post

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

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

2 Comments

  1. SubSonica said,

    March 14, 2008 at 5:25 am

    Gravatar

    “When Steve Ballmer said just two weeks ago that Microsoft’s number one competitor is Linux, he probably meant it.”

    Well, you are right. Have a look at the latest available 10Q SEC filing (Q1) from Microsoft:
    http://www.microsoft.com/msft/SEC/default.mspx
    http://www.microsoft.com/msft/download/FY08/Q1-08_10Q.doc

    You can see 1A section Risk asessment : First is “alternatives to our business model” and … GNU/Linux! (page 31)

    “A prominent example of open source software is the Linux operating system. Although we believe our products provide customers with significant advantages in security, productivity, and total cost of ownership, the popularization of the open source software model continues to pose a significant challenge to our business model, including continuing efforts by proponents of open source software to convince governments worldwide to mandate the use of open source software in their purchase and deployment of software products. To the extent open source software gains increasing market acceptance, sales of our products may decline, we may have to reduce the prices we charge for our products, and revenue and operating margins may consequently decline. ”

    So here you have it: GNU/Linux is enemy Nº 1. And they are going to fight aginst govenrments adopting it. Guess what is the role of MSOOXML and the whole world corruption circus involving ISO around? (Pillar 1)

    They are as well concerned about patents not protecting them as much as they do in the US (they forget to mention “the other side of the coin” how dear patent lawsuits are costing them):

    “, the absence of harmonized patent laws makes it more difficult to ensure consistent respect for patent rights. Throughout the world, we actively educate consumers about the benefits of licensing genuine products and obtaining indemnification benefits for intellectual property risks, and we educate lawmakers about the advantages of a business climate where intellectual property rights are protected. However, continued educational and enforcement efforts may fail to enhance revenue. Reductions in the legal protection for software intellectual property rights or additional compliance burdens could both adversely affect revenue. ”

    So expect them to push for worldwide software patentability. They try to corrupt the legislative systems by “educating lawmakers” in order to protect their revenue and profit margins (Pillar 2)

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    March 14, 2008 at 6:02 am

    Gravatar

    Yes, this is tracked pretty well by Digital Majority, with whom I’ve been in touch recently (I still communicate with people whose writings intersect with ours).

    Re: “Throughout the world, we actively educate consumers about the benefits”

    I suppose you’ve heard about Microsoft giving young children IP education. They want to raise a generation of zombies whose future inclination is to legalise ownership of simple ideas. But that’s a separate topic we needn’t go into. I cover this elsewhere and add pointers to the link digests. :-)

What Else is New


  1. Burning the House That Richard Stallman (RMS) Built: An Open Letter to GNU Maintainers Who Opposed RMS

    An open letter to people who petitioned RMS to step down and who outsource GNU projects to Microsoft (GitHub)



  2. Links 30/5/2020: Godot Editor Under Web Browsers, Alpine Linux 3.12.0 and EasyOS 2.3

    Links for the day



  3. EPO's Illegal Patents and Massive Corruption Go Unnoticed by Corporate Media and Sites That Cover Patent News

    Very major corruption scandals still emerge in Europe's second-largest institution and illegal patents get granted as well as promoted; somehow, perhaps miraculously, this no longer seems to bother anybody in the media (corruption and radical policies have been gradually 'normalised')



  4. Never Mind If GNU/Linux Works Better Inside Hospitals and Free Software Not Only Safer But Vastly More Efficient...

    With lives on the line one might expect hospitals to choose what's most secure and generally works best; but in practice there seems to be a leaning towards what bribes best



  5. Sick Alexander Ramsey is Using a Public Health Crisis to Lie About the Unitary Patent, Whose Fall Made Him Redundant and/or Obsolete

    Weaponised media continues to manufacture utterly ridiculous puff pieces for Team UPC, containing intentional lies from beginning to end



  6. IRC Proceedings: Friday, May 29, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, May 29, 2020



  7. They Came, They Saw, He Died

    Microsoft is an inherently sociopathic company; today's story of AppGet is an important reminder that Microsoft has not changed and isn't changing (Maui is another week-old example of trademark-hijacking tactics by Microsoft)



  8. Microsoft-Connected CloudGuru Doesn't Care About GNU/Linux and Now It's Gradually Killing the BSD/Linux-Centric Jupiter Broadcasting (Bought by Linux Academy)

    Assuming Docker is being 'killed' by Microsoft (or at least hijacked to push Windows, Azure and so on) while the GitHub-hosted (Microsoft) CloudGuru, whose co-founder comes from Microsoft, ‘finishes the job’ with Linux Academy and its assets, it’s time to take stock of a pattern/trend that ruins the media too



  9. What Happened to Docker is a Cautionary Tale About the Not-So-New Microsoft

    It’s hardly shocking that Docker collapsed (mass-scale layoffs) after the company had gotten close to Microsoft and got rid of its very own founder (a Red Hat veteran) while the software is being killed off/co-opted by Microsoft (all over the news this week; we’ve omitted links by intention as it’s only puff pieces, no investigative journalism anywhere); we only ask one thing: is anyone paying attention and, if so, what are the lessons learned?



  10. If You Want to Support and Follow Us 'Properly', Really Simple Syndication (RSS) is Most Reliable and Robust to Censorship

    Our longstanding position on social control media (we reject it and don't participate in it) is only proven ever more justified now that the mere idea of fact-checking is seen as controversial if not illegal



  11. Links 29/5/2020: Genode OS 20.05 and FSF Video Conferencing Service

    Links for the day



  12. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, May 28, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, May 28, 2020



  13. Weaponised Media Promoting an Illegal Patent System (UPC), Exploiting Major Pandemic in the Process

    The whole 'unitary' scam/ploy (merely a Trojan horse for litigation and low-quality/invalid patents) is being promoted by Thierry Breton as EU Internal Market Commissioner (in spite of illegalities and constitutional issues), merely reinforcing the view that the EU is rather complicit in the abuses perpetrated by Team Battistelli; the media in the pockets of oligarchs and litigation firms (fronting for these oligarchs) plays along, as usual



  14. Links 28/5/2020: OpenSSH 8.3, New Mesa Release, Raspberry Pi 4 News, Fedora 32 Elections

    Links for the day



  15. The EPO Became a Very Radical Institution

    Projection tactics are doomed to say more about the people who utilise them than about anybody else; the EPO has become so autocratic and corrupt that corruption is seen as normal and workers who explain this corruption are framed as "irrational" or "crazy" or "radical"



  16. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, May 27, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, May 27, 2020



  17. Allegations That Microsoft Will Ruin Besieged Clinics and Hospitals to Retaliate Against Those Who Name the Culprit

    With a broader picture coming into view, as per the above index, we're starting to wrap up the series while issuing a call for more stories and eyewitness testimonies, exposing the nature of attacks on hospitals (those almost always target Microsoft and others' proprietary software, which is technically unfit for purpose)



  18. Microsoft Has Ideas...

    Based on the pattern of media coverage, composed by Microsoft MVPs and Microsoft-affiliated blogs/sites, confusing the public about the meaning of GNU/Linux is reminiscent of an "Extend" phase



  19. ZDNet Proves Our Point by Doing Not a Single Article About Linux (RC7), Only About Linus and Windows Clickbait Junk

    It seems abundantly clear that nobody wants to cover the actual news about Linux and instead it’s all about which PC Linus Torvalds is using (gossip/tabloid); ZDNet‘s latest two articles are an example of this…



  20. UPC Lies That Make One Laugh...

    IP Kat and Bristows (overlaps exist) are still pretending that the UPC is coming because reality doesn’t seem to matter anymore, only self-serving agenda



  21. Canonical Continues to Help Promote Windows Instead of GNU/Linux or Ubuntu

    Thrice in the past week alone Canonical used the official “Ubuntu Blog” to help Microsoft instead of GNU/Linux and it is part of a disturbing trend which lends credibility to jokes or rumours about a Microsoft takeover; it's not like many people use this thing, either (Canonical helps Microsoft shore up a dying/languishing EEE attempt)



  22. Links 27/5/2020: CoreOS Container Linux Reaches Its End-Of-Life, 2020 GNOME Foundation Elections Coming

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, May 26, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, May 26, 2020



  24. GNEW Seedlings vs. Free Software Deforestation

    “The idea of the GNEW Project really is about keeping the goals of the GNU Project alive — hopefully, they won’t destroy or co-opt too much of the GNU Project, that people like the Hyperbola devs can’t fix it with BSD.”



  25. Joi Ito Already Admitted on the Record That Bill Gates Had Paid MIT Through Jeffrey Epstein

    An important exhibit for the accurate historical record (because MIT has been trying to deny truth itself)



  26. It's Convenient to Call All Your Critics Nuts and/or Jealous

    Bill Gates antagonists are not motivated by hatred or jealousy but a sense of injustice; spoiled brats who break the law aren’t a source of envy any more than mass murderers are subject of admiration



  27. Real History of Microsoft and How It Became 'Successful'

    New video that contains a portion about the history of Microsoft -- the part paid-for 'journalists' (paid by Microsoft and Bill Gates) rarely or never speak about



  28. Hostility and Aggression Towards Staff That Does Not Use Windows After Windows Takes Entire Hospital Down

    Microsoft Windows, with NSA back doors, continues to take hospitals offline (with records copied by criminals if not stolen by effectively locking the originals out of reach for ransom money); but guess who’s being punished for it…



  29. They Came, They Saw, We Died...

    It cannot be overstated that we're under attack (or a "Jihad" against Linux as Bill Gates himself put it) and failing to act upon it will be costly as time may be running out and our groups are being 'bought off' by Microsoft in rapid succession, as per the plan/strategy



  30. The GitHub Takeover Was an Extension of Microsoft's War on GPL/Copyleft (Because Sharing Code to Anyone But Microsoft is 'Piracy')

    Licences that make it easier for Microsoft to 'steal' (or a lot harder for Free software to compete against proprietary software) are still being promoted by Microsoft; its GitHub tentacles (see GitHub's logo) further contribute to this agenda


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