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. The End of Software Patents and PTAB's Role in Enforcing That End

    Software patents are fast becoming a dying breed and the appeal board (PTAB) of the USPTO accelerates this trend, irrespective of patent immunity attempts



  2. No, China Isn't Most Innovative, It's Just Granting a Lot of Low-Quality Patents

    Patent extremists are trying to make China look like a role model or a success story because China grants far too many patents, spurring an explosion in litigation



  3. Battistelli-Campinos Transition Will Be a Smooth One as the Administrative Council Remains the Same and the Boards Still Besieged

    A rather pessimistic (albeit likely realistic) expectation from tomorrow's meeting of the Administrative Council, which continues to show that no lessons were learned and no strategy will be altered to avoid doom (low-quality patents and stocks running out)



  4. Links 12/12/2017: New BlackArch ISO and Stable Kernels

    Links for the day



  5. German Media Helps Cover Up -- Not Cover -- the Latest EPO Scandal

    EPO-Handelsblatt attention diversion tricks may be effective as German media barely shows interest in one of the EPO's biggest scandals to date



  6. PTAB Haters Fail to Guard Bogus Patents, But They Still Try

    Three Affiliated Tribes probably won't enjoy sovereign immunity from PTAB, Dennis Crouch won't manage to slow down PTAB, and patent litigation will stagnate as bad patents perish before they even land in a lawsuit



  7. Team UPC's Tilmann Defends Rogue Vote at 1 AM in the Morning With Just 5% of Politicians (Those With Vested Interests) Attending

    Just when German democracy is being stolen by a legislative coup (in the dead of night when 95% of politicians are absent/asleep) there's someone 'courageous' enough to rear his ugly head and attempt to justify that coup



  8. The Mask Falls: Lobbyist David Kappos Now Composes Pieces for the Patent Trolls' Lobby (IAM)

    David Kappos, a former USPTO Director who is now lobbying for large corporations that derive revenue from patent extortion, is writing for IAM even if his views are significantly biased by his aggressive paymasters (just like IAM's)



  9. The EPO Protest Tomorrow Isn't Just About Judge Corcoran But About the EPO as a Whole

    PO staff is about to protest against the employer, pointing out that "Battistelli is still showing a total and utter lack of respect not only for his staff and their rights but also for the Administrative Council and for the Tribunal"



  10. Claim: Judge Corcoran to Be Put Under Benoît Battistelli's Control in DG1

    Benoît Battistelli, who openly disregards and refuses to obey judges (while intervening in trials and delivering 'royal decrees' whenever it suits him), may soon gain direct control over the judge he hates most



  11. The European Patent Organisation Refrains (For Nearly a Week) From Speaking About Battistelli's Abuses as Judged by ILO Tribunal

    The EPO's silence on the matter of Patrick Corcoran is deafening; to make matters worse, the EPO continues to pollute media and academia with money of stakeholders, with the sole intention of lobbying and misleading news coverage (clearly a disservice to these stakeholders)



  12. Carl Josefsson Lets Judge Patrick Corcoran Come Back to Work at the EPO

    After initial reluctance to obey/respect the rulings from the ILO (security staff declining access) there is official permission for Patrick Corcoran to enter and resume work (following 3 years of injustice against him)



  13. Bristows is Being Hammered With Negative Comments For Its Unitary Patent (UPC) Lies

    The Unified Patent Court (UPC) is practically dead in the UK and Ireland; Bristows, nevertheless, continues with its desperate spin



  14. Links 11/12/2017: Linux 4.15 RC3, Debian 8.10 and Debian 9.3

    Links for the day



  15. Judge Corcoran Turns to His Government for Help and EPO 'House Ban' is Finally Lifted

    Sources that are very reliable say that Patrick Corcoran is coming back to work, however it's now clear when and how long for



  16. Raw: Battistelli's Control/Domination Over the Boards of Appeal

    An old EPO document internally voicing concerns about the lack of independence at the Boards of Appeal



  17. Raw: Conflicts of Interest of EPO Vice-President

    An old EPO concern regarding structural collisions and mixed loyalties



  18. Microsoft-Connected Patent Trolls Are Increasingly Active and Microsoft is Selling 'Protection' (Azure Subscriptions)

    There are several indications that Microsoft-connected shells, which produce no products and are threatening a large number of companies, are inadvertently if not intentionally helping Microsoft sell "indemnification" ("Azure IP Advantage," which echoes the Microsoft/Novell strategy for collecting what they called "patent royalties" one decade ago)



  19. Yes, RPost is Definitely a Patent Troll and Its Software Patents Are at Risk Thanks to Alice

    The latest whitewashing (or reputation-laundering) pieces from Watchtroll, which tries to justify patent-trolling activities with software patents, typically in the Eastern District of Texas



  20. The Latest Scams in the Patent World

    Examples of 'dirty laundry' of the patent microcosm, which it understandably does not like covering (as it harms confidence in their services/advice)



  21. Patents Are Becoming a Welfare System for the Rich and Powerful

    A culture of litigation and more recently the patenting of broad industry standards may mean that multi-billion dollar corporations are cashing in without lifting a finger



  22. Unlike the Mobile Domain, When it Comes to Cars Patent Lawsuits Remain Rare

    An optimistic note regarding the relatively low-temperature legal landscape surrounding advanced automobiles, even though patents are being amassed on software in that domain



  23. The Federal Circuit Rules (Again) in Favour of Section 101/Alice, Koch-Funded CPIP Tries to Overturn Alice at the Supreme Court

    The US Supreme Court's decision on Alice continues to have a profoundly positive impact (except for trolls) and Koch-funded academics try hard to compel the US Supreme Court to reverse/override Alice (so far to no avail)



  24. Next Director of the USPTO Parrots Talking Points of Patent Extremists and Their Lobbyists

    The next USPTO boss (still subject to official confirmation) may be little more than a power grab by the litigation and patenting 'industry', which prioritises not science and technology but its own bottom line



  25. Raw: Three Years for 'Justice' (to be Disregarded by Benoît Battistelli) at ILO and Over a Decade at the EPO

    The delays associated with ‘justice’ at the EPO (usually neither justice nor compliance with rulings) have become so extraordinary that immunity should long ago have been stripped off and Battistelli et al been held accountable



  26. Raw: Scuttling of the General Advisory Committee and Battistelli Stacking the Deck to Have 'Yes Men' as Representatives

    How the EPO broke down resistance to Battistelli’s oppressive policies not only at the Council, disciplinary committees and auditory divisions but also staff representation (symptomatic of Battistelli’s notion of justice)



  27. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board Will Endure Supreme Court Test and Overcome the Tribal Immunity “Scam”

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), based on the latest news, is still winning the argument and justifying its existence/importance



  28. Phones/Mobility (Trillion-Dollar Market) May Have Become Infested and Encumbered by Aggressive, Dying Companies

    The tough reality that new entrants/entrepreneurs are facing now that a few dying giants look to "monetise" their patents rather than create anything



  29. Links 9/12/2017: Mesa 17.3, Wine 3.0 RC1, New Debian Builds

    Links for the day



  30. Like the EPO, Taiwan/China (SIPO) Harm SMEs With a Policy of Patent Maximalism Which Fosters Litigation, Not Innovation

    A culture of patent maximalism breeds plenty of lawsuits in China (good for the legal ‘industry’), but small companies that are innovative lose focus and resources, just like in Europe where SMEs are discriminated against


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