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

07.26.08

Mr. Shuttleworth Misunderstands Microsoft’s Software Patents Tactics

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents, Ubuntu at 6:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Talk is cheap. Show me the code.”

Linus Torvalds

M

icrosoft has only threatened Linux without ever showing any evidence to back it slanderous allegations. That’s FUD and saber-rattling, but it’s not a lawsuit. At the same time, Microsoft quietly resorted to extortion of large Linux users. The mainstream press hardly covers this hush-hush fiasco.

Nonetheless, Mark Shuttleworth, who on Wednesday advocated GPLv3, seems to believe that:

  1. Microsoft has not attacked yet
  2. Microsoft won’t attack

In a way, both of these assertions are wrong. The extortion, a mafia-like technique which is documented even by Microsoft, is akin to lynching (punishment without a trial) and Microsoft might already be attacking Linux, by proxy. Here is what he said:

Shuttleworth smirked and then responded.

“I don’t believe Microsoft is going to sue any open source software vendor, doing so would be tantamount to launching nuclear war.”

The audience erupted into laughter.

“We do copyright assignment and I really do believe that’s a valuable practice,” Shuttleworth continued. “As part of our copyright assignment we don’t ask for any statement about patents, we accept the code, it’s a contribution and we take responsibility for it and we carry that forward.”

Mark seems indifferent when it comes to Mono in Ubuntu (Fedora and Debian possibly beg to differ), but copyrights come into play as well. He neglects to account for a point that he made before. The patent trolls are a big problem, more so when they are former Microsoft employees!

Microsoft won’t sue Linux. Of course not, that would be just as foolish as what SCO did (possibly at the behest of Microsoft). they’ll use patent trolls (shell companies) instead. Remember FireStar, which attacked Red Hat [1, 2, 3, 4]? Guess what? There turns out to be a Microsoft connection.

Why go to the effort of developing new software when you can use patents to extort other companies? A story about FireStar Software, which has not updated its software since 2003, preferring to rely on lawyers rather than programmers, to assure its income…

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0EIN/is_2002_May_20/ai_94390699

“Under terms of the agreement FireStar Software and Microsoft and will be participating in joint marketing and sales activities targeting Insurance companies faced with issues of rapidly developing applications compliant with industry standards.”

Microsoft connections also exist in another patent troll that attacked Linux [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11]. Don’t forget Intellectual Ventures, which is almost a Microsoft spin-off given the personal involvement of Mhyrvold [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7].

All of this is a strategy of creating and using laws that sideline the competition. The DMCA, which Microsoft is promoting [1, 2, 3], is another such example. It’s reaching Canada while the founder of Red Hat is trying to fight a political (and easily corruptible) muscle. From the news:

His long history with open source development has him concerned about the provisions of Bill C-61 prohibiting software that circumvents technological measures (AKA technical protection measures, or TPMs).

Despite an exemption in Bill C-61 that allows users to circumvent TPMs for the purpose of making software interoperable, Young told ComputerWorld Canada Thursday this could have unintended consequences.

“I don’t want to come across as being hugely anti- (Bill C-61) but I am concerned about one particular feature,” Young said. “It errs on the side of making technology illegal as opposed to making behaviour illegal.”

Because technology could change over the next few years, it’s hard to predict the effect of making circumvention tools illegal.

“It’s the equivalent to making screwdrivers and pliers illegal because they can be used to break and enter instead of making the act of breaking and entering illegal,” Young said.

It’s important to understand the fight against vital rights, which includes an abuse of the system that injures Free software the most.

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

What Else is New


  1. Criminal Microsoft is Censoring the Web and Breaks Laws to Do So; the Web Should Censor (Remove) Microsoft

    Microsoft is still breaking the Internet using completely bogus takedown requests (an abuse of DMCA) and why Microsoft Windows, which contains weaponised back doors (shared with the NSA), should be banned from the Internet, not just from the Web



  2. Microsoft 'Loving' GNU/Linux and Other Corporate Media Fiction

    Microsoft has bullied or cleverly bribed enough technology-centric media sites to have them characterise Microsoft as a friend of Free/Open Source software (FOSS) that also "loves Linux"



  3. India May be Taking Bill Gates to Court for Misusing His So-called 'Charity' to Conduct Clinical Trials Without Consent on Behalf of Companies He Invests in

    Bill Gates may finally be pulled into the courtroom again, having been identified for large-scale abuses that he commits in the name of profit (not "charity")



  4. The Problems With Legal Workarounds, Patent Scope, and Expansion of Patent Trolls to the East

    Patent trolls are in the news again and it's rather important, albeit for various different reasons, more relevant than the ones covered here in the past



  5. Links 20/10/2014: Cloudera and Red Hat, Debian 7.7, and Vivid Vervet

    Links for the day



  6. Links 20/10/2014: 10 Years Since First Ubuntu Release

    Links for the day



  7. How Patent Lawyers Analyze Alice v. CLS Bank

    Breaking down a patent lawyer's analysis of a Supreme Court's decision that seemingly invalidated hundreds of thousands of software patents



  8. Is It Google's Turn to Head the USPTO Corporation?

    The industry-led USPTO continues to be coordinated by some of its biggest clients, despite issues associated with conflicting interests



  9. The EPO's Public Relations Disaster Amid Distrust From Within (and EPO Communications Chief Leaves): Part VII

    Amid unrest and suspicion of misconduct in the EPO's management (ongoing for months if not years), Transparency International steps in, but the EPO's management completely ignores Transparency International, refusing to collaborate; the PR chief of the EPO is apparently being pushed out in the mean time



  10. Links 18/10/2014: Debian Plans for Init Systems, Tails 1.2

    Links for the day



  11. Links 18/10/2014: New ELive, Android Expansion

    Links for the day



  12. Another Fresh Blow to Software Patents (and With Them Patent Trolls)

    Another new development shows that more burden of proof is to be put on the litigant, thus discouraging the most infamous serial patent aggressors and reducing the incentive to settle with a payment out of court



  13. Links 16/10/2014: New Android, SSL 3.0 Flaw

    Links for the day



  14. How the Corporate Press Deceives and Sells Microsoft Agenda

    Various new examples of media propaganda that distorts or makes up the facts (bias/lies by omission/selection) and where this is all coming from



  15. Vista 10 is Still Vapourware, But We Already Know It Will Increase Surveillance on Its Users and Contain Malicious Back Doors

    The villainous company which makes insecure-by-design operating systems will continue to do so, but in the mean time the corporate press covers only bugs in FOSS, not back doors in proprietary software



  16. Links 15/10/2014: KDE Plasma 5.1 is Out, GOG Reaches 100-Title Mark

    Links for the day



  17. With .NET Foundation Affiliation Xamarin is Another Step Closer to Being Absorbed by Microsoft

    Xamarin is not even trying to pretend that separation exists between Microsoft and its work; yet another collaboration is announced



  18. The EPO's Protection Triangle of Battistelli, Kongstad, and Topić: Part VI

    Jesper Kongstad, Benoît Battistelli, and Zeljko Topić are uncomfortably close personally and professionally, so suspicions arise that nepotism and protectionism play a negative role that negatively affects the European public



  19. Corporate Media Confirms the Demise of Software Patents in the United States; Will India and Europe Follow?

    It has become increasingly official that software patents are being weakened in the United States' USPTO as well as the courts; will software leaders such as India and Europe stop trying to imitate the old USPTO?



  20. Links 14/10/2014: CAINE 6, New RHEL, Dronecode

    Links for the day



  21. Microsoft's Disdain for Women Steals the Show at a Women's Event

    Steve Ballmer's successor, Satya Nadella, is still too tactless to lie to the audience, having been given --through subversive means -- a platform at a conference that should have shunned Microsoft, a famously misogynistic company



  22. SCOTUS May Soon Put an End to the 'Copyrights on APIs' Question While Proprietary Giants Continue to Harass Android/Linux in Every Way Conceivable

    Google takes its fight over API freedom to the Supreme Court in the Unites States and it also takes that longstanding patent harassment from the Microsoft- and Apple-backed troll (Rockstar) out of East Texas



  23. Patent Lawsuits Almost Halved After SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Software Patents

    The barrier for acceptance of software patent applications is raised in the United States and patent lawsuits, many of which involve software these days, are down very sharply, based on new figures from Lex Machina



  24. Links 13/10/2014: ChromeOS and EXT, Debian Resists Systemd Domination

    Links for the day



  25. Links 12/10/2014: Blackphone Tablet, Sony's Firefox OS Port

    Links for the day



  26. Links 9/10/2014: Free Software in Germany, Lenovo Tablets With Android

    Links for the day



  27. Links 8/10/2014: A Lot of Linux+AMD News, New ROSA Desktop Is Out

    Links for the day



  28. Lawyers' Propaganda About Software Patents and a New AstroTurf Entity Called Innovation Alliance

    Patent propaganda and deception from patent lawyers (among other parasites such as patent trolls) continues to flood the Web, intersecting with reports that prove them totally wrong



  29. How Microsoft Handles Disasters: Grace Hopper Conference Has Been Infiltrated by "Microsoft Disaster Response"

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) must be a disaster to Microsoft's bottom line because Microsoft is sending "Microsoft Disaster Response" to infiltrate and disrupt a conference about women in FOSS



  30. Links 8/10/2014: Gummersbach Moves to GNU/Linux, Docker Acquires Koality, KDE Frameworks 5.3

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts