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

08.10.09

Signs That Microsoft Might Prepare for ‘Patent Terror’ Against Rival Office Suites

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, OpenOffice, Patents, RAND, SUN at 1:23 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“What we’re seeing though now can be loosely described as patent terrorism, where people are using their patent horde as a threat [...] It’s almost like a cold war stand over tactic; where I have these patents and if you breach these patents, I’m going to come after you and sue you.”

James Eagleton, systems product manager for Sun Microsystems

Summary: Signs of increased patent aggression in Microsoft’s behaviour amid sinking profits

With OpenOffice.org 3.2 coming quite soon, not to mention the ODF Workshop, Microsoft has many reasons to worry about its biggest cash cow. Microsoft seems to be dealing with rival office suites in the same way it deals with GNU/Linux: FUD, patents, and litigation, in that order. Microsoft has already moved beyond smearing or belittling Apps and OpenOffice.org. Having already made vague patent accusations against OpenOffice.org back in 2007, Microsoft is now collecting patents on word processing.

At the same time that Microsoft was pushing for the adoption of an XML-based file format for documents, it had a patent pending that would cover most uses of XML for word processing files.

This is an issue that was covered some days ago [1, 2] and also a few months ago in:

Michael Tiemann speaks about Microsoft’s latest RAND traps [1, 2] (patent royalties).

Glynn Moody writes an insightful analysis of Microsoft’s latest attempt to confuse the issue of open standards by throwing a new word into the mix: balance. It didn’t fool Glynn, and it shouldn’t fool you, either.

In the final analysis, the question of what is an open standard, and how governments and free markets should police the claims of those who purport to offer open standards should never come down to a question of rhetoric. An open standard should never depend on what the definition of “is” is. Rather, there is plenty of room for those who are honest to say “X is a proprietary standard, dependent on restrictive technologies that must be licensed for a fee” and for others who are equally honest when they say “Y is an open standard, dependent on a variety of technologies, all of which can be practiced royalty free”. And if we believe that free markets can make intelligent decisions based on fair information, market participants can choose which offering is most attractive to them and the best will come to all.

With that in mind, Tiemann and the OSI should be aware that Microsoft is trying to appeal to FOSS projects while it’s suing GNU/Linux vendors. Microsoft uses lawsuits against vulnerable Linux-distributing companies that surrender and let Windows be publicly perceived as ‘safer’. RAND is part of this plot, which Microsoft may later try to use as a suppressor of OpenOffice.org adoption.

In a bid to increase their support for open source technology, Microsoft (News – Alert) has announced the addition of SugarCRM Community Edition for free download on the Windows Web App Gallery.

[...]

In November 2006 TMC reported that SugarCRM had announced its membership in the Interop Vendor Alliance with Microsoft.

Going back to office suites, they already appear to be marketing Microsoft Office with pseudo ODF ‘support’ [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] over at Wikipedia [1, 2]. Another vector of competition happens to be the Web (SaaS) and not only Google Apps or Zoho are out there looking to poach users. Evermore is moving there as well. From the news:

Chinese Microsoft Office Rival Launching on Web Soon

A Chinese company that offers a rival suite to Microsoft Office is following industry trends by turning its software into a Web-based service.

Evermore Software, based in the eastern Chinese city of Wuxi, has for years offered a software suite that looks very similar to Microsoft Office but costs less. Now the company sees its rivals moving online, and it is designing a Web version of its suite to compete with the likes of Google Docs and Microsoft’s upcoming Office Web apps.

Some of Microsoft’s acquired patents may also apply to Web-based office suites. Is Microsoft preparing to ‘pull a SCO’ in desparate attempts to defend its aging cash cow?

Cash cow

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

A Single Comment

  1. David Gerard said,

    August 10, 2009 at 9:53 am

    Gravatar

    I really want to see Larry Ellison aggressively pushing OpenOffice.org to take Microsoft out. Boy does he hate those guys.

What Else is New


  1. Links 28/6/2016: Red Hat Summit 2016, Hadoop Events

    Links for the day



  2. Today's Media Coverage Says Microsoft Loves Linux, But Today Microsoft Extorted Linux Using Software Patents Again

    Luna Mobile has just been extorted by Microsoft (using dubious software patents, as usual) for using Android/Linux, but Microsoft-influenced media carries on spreading the lie that "Microsoft loves Linux"



  3. New Efforts to Work Around Barriers to UPC in Light of 'Brexit'; Behind These Efforts Are Self-Serving Patent Profiteers

    look at who's trying to work around the latest barriers to the widely-unwanted (by the public) Unitary Patent regime and what is being planned behind the scenes, or behind closed doors (by and for those who stand to profit from the Unitary Patent regime)



  4. Injunction Against Battistelli's Investigative Unit (Known Internally as 'Gestapo') Amid Serious Injustices and Bogus 'Trials'

    SUEPO, the EPO's staff union, steps up its spiel in a case against the "European Patent Organization" as defendant and "SUEPO/VEOB" (Trade Union of the European Patent Office) as claimants



  5. [ES] Con la UPC Muerta por el Resto del Termino de Battistelli, No Hay Razón para que la EPO o el Consejo Administrativo Sigan Manteniéndolo Más

    Pensamientos acerca de lo que pasará al líderazgo de la EPO después de ‘Brexit’ (salida Británica de la EU), lo que sevéramente socava el proyecto más grande de Battistelli el que usaba habituálmente para justificar sus increíbles abusos



  6. [ES] El Caradura Benoît Battistelli Debería Renunciar a Luz de la Filtrada Nueva Decisión en Su Vendeta en Contra de un Juez que se Atrevió a Decir la Verdad (Actualizado)

    Benoît Battistelli continúa quebrando las propias reglas de la EPO, no sólo las leyes naciónales, como una nueva decisión ayuda a revelar



  7. [ES] Cada Vez Más Parece Que Battistelli está Escondiéndo ‘Evidencia’ Falsa y/o Ilegalmente Obtenda de la Unidad Investigativa de la EPO

    El porqué creemos que Benoît Battistelli está cada vez mas desesperado de esconder operaciónes ilícitas de reunir ´evidencia´ lo que eventuálment lo puso a él mismo — no al acusado — en una situación catastrófica situacion que lo puede forzar (esperamos) a us renuncia



  8. Links 28/6/2016: Vista 10 Updategate, OpenMandriva 3.0 Beta 2

    Links for the day



  9. Links 27/6/2016: Linux 4.7 RC 5, OpenMandriva Lx 3.0 Beta 2

    Links for the day



  10. From Alleged Organised Crime to Vice-President of the European Patent Office (EPO)

    Željko Topić's situation in Croatia illuminated by means of recent documents from the authorities



  11. Battistelli May Still be on the Way Out as Pressure Grows in Germany, UPC in Shambles

    Pressure on Battistelli is growing even from within circles that are traditionally protective of him and a long letter is sent to Dr. Christoph Ernst, who some believe will replace Battistelli



  12. Caricature: European Patent Office (EPO) Under Battistelli

    The latest caricature about the state of the European Patent Office (EPO)



  13. Techrights (Almost) at 10: From Software Patents to Novell and to Present Focus on EPO

    A short story about how and why we ended up writing so much about the European Patent Office (EPO) and the impact beyond Europe



  14. Patents Roundup: Bad Quality (USPTO), Bad Analysis (India), Bad Microsoft, Bad Actors (Trolls), Bad Scope (Software Patents), and the Ugly

    A mishmash of news about patents, mostly regarding the United States, and what can be deduced at the moment



  15. Links 26/6/2016: IceCat 38.8.0, Wine 1.9.13

    Links for the day



  16. With UPC Dead for Battistelli's Entire Remaining Term, No Reason for the EPO or the Administrative Council to Keep Battistelli Around

    Thoughts about what happens to the EPO's leadership after 'Brexit' (British exit from the EU), which severely undermines Battistelli's biggest project that he habitually used to justify his incredible abuses



  17. Links 24/6/2016: Xen Project 4.7, Cinnamon 3.0.6

    Links for the day



  18. Benoît Battistelli Should Resign in Light of New Leak of Decision in His Vendetta Against Truth-Telling Judge (Updated)

    Benoît Battistelli continues to break the EPO's own rules, not just national laws, as a new decision helps reveal



  19. Fake Patents on Software From Fake Australian 'Inventor' of Bitcoin and the Globally-Contagious Nature of EPO Patent Scope

    News from Australia regarding software patents that should not be granted and how patent lawyers from Australia rely on European patent law (EPO and UK-IPO) for guidance on patent scope



  20. Patent Lawyers Love (and Amplify) Halo and Enfish, Omit or Dismiss Cuozzo and Alice

    By misinterpreting the current situation with respect to software patents and misusing terms like "innovation" patent lawyers and others in the patent microcosm hope to convince the public (or potential clients) that nothing in effect has changed and software patents are all fine and dandy



  21. Looks Increasingly Plausible That Battistelli is Covering up Bogus and/or Illegally-Obtained 'Evidence' From the EPO's Investigative Unit

    Why we believe that Benoît Battistelli is growingly desperate to hide evidence of rogue evidence-collecting operations which eventually landed himself -- not the accused -- in a catastrophic situation that can force his resignation



  22. As Decision on the UK's EU Status Looms, EPO Deep in a Crisis of Patent Quality

    Chaotic situation at the EPO and potential changes in the UK cause a great deal of debate about the UPC, which threatens to put the whole or Europe at the mercy of patent trolls from abroad



  23. Another Demonstration by European Patent Office (EPO) Staff on Same Day as Administrative Council's Meeting

    SUEPO (staff union of the EPO) continues to organise staff actions against extraordinary injustice by Benoît Battistelli and his flunkies whom he gave top positions at the EPO



  24. Links 23/6/2016: Red Hat Results, Randa Stories

    Links for the day



  25. Interview With FOSSForce/All Things Free Tech

    New interview with Robin "Roblimo" Miller on behalf of FOSSForce



  26. Links 22/6/2016: PulseAudio 9.0, GNOME 3.21.3 Released

    Links for the day



  27. IP Europe's UPC Lobbying and the EPO Connection

    The loose but seemingly ever-growing connections between AstroTurfing groups like IP Europe (pretending to represent SMEs) and EPO staff which is lobbying-centric



  28. EPO “Recruitment of Brits is Down by 80%”

    Letter says that “recruitment of Brits is down by 80%” and "the EPO lost 7% of UK staff in one year"



  29. The Conspiracy of Patent Lawyers for UPC and Battistelli's Role in Preparing by Firing People

    The parasitic firms that lobby for the UPC and actually create it -- firms like those that pass money to Battistelli's EPO -- are doing exactly the opposite of what Europe needs



  30. Patent Lawyers, Having Lost Much of the Battle for Software Patents in the US, Resort to Harmful Measures and Spin

    A quick glance at how patent lawyers and their lobbyists/advocates have reacted to the latest decision from the US Supreme Court (Justice Breyer)


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