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

09.12.09

Microsoft’s Latest Mischiefs Justify Need to Watch the Patent Trolls

Posted in America, Europe, Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, IBM, Microsoft, OIN, Patents, Red Hat at 6:54 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Steve Ballmer license

Image from Wikimedia

Summary: Lessons that can be learned from Microsoft’s latest patent strategy and hostile indoctrination that it spreads to shops across the nation

MICROSOFT has attempted to have patent trolls attack GNU/Linux, according to reputable sources including OIN, the Linux Foundation, and even Red Hat’s legal staff. We covered this in [1, 2, 3, 4]. With Acacia in mind, it is possible that Microsoft did something similar before, and very successfully so. Here is what Glyn Moody thinks:

This is truly bizarre. Why would Microsoft unload a bunch of “Linux-focused patents” – stuff you would think it would fondle lovingly as it ruminated endlessly on the damage they might do in terms of FUD, if nothing else. But no, not only does Microsoft sell them, but they end up in positively the worse place possible, from Microsoft’s point of view: a Linux-friendly bunch with the avowed aim of keeping such patents safely locked away.

Michael from the OSI (and from Red Hat) wrote about it last night, remarking in conclusion that:

I have long believed that software patents are like landmines, devices that have unpredictable destructive power, and a threat to innovators who often cannot know of their existence until the damage has been done. This latest chapter in the story tells me that they are more dangerous than ever, and that it is more urgent than ever to mount a serious campaign to disarm them all, before it is too late. If we can elect a government that believes that “open source is the best form of civic participation”, then we can surely find the political will to make open source (and free software) innovation 100% legal. There are many places to make your voices heard. In the USA, you can start with End Software Patents. In Europe, No Software Patents!. And there are many others. It may seem like a bother, but sometimes political action is needed to enjoy necessary freedoms.

Microsoft lobbyists are directly opposing these initiatives using AstroTurf techniques. Will IBM help support the likes of FFII or will it carry on lobbying to keep software patents in tact by lying about Free software?

…a recent nugget buried in IBM’s amicus brief for the Bilski case takes a novel slant on the issue. Big Blue told the US Supreme Court that software patent lockdowns are actually the secret to open source’s success.

Any remarks, Bob? Will IBM make a public retraction like it typically does after such blunders?

Here is another new gem:

DRM Company: If You Think Patents Are Bad, You’re Un-American

In our recent discussion about another bad idea for a new type of DRM that will surely fail, Steve R. pointed us to an article in Forbes about Intertrust, the DRM company, who apparently is cooking up yet another DRM scheme. But, unlike the system we talked about in the original post — where the guy noted that the concept had to be widely adopted as a standard, and not protected, Intertrust goes on and on and on about how it’s got a ton of DRM patents to protect this new DRM scheme. This isn’t a surprise. Intertrust’s entire business model was based on suing Microsoft for patent infringement.

We shall carry on watching Microsoft-tied patent trolls and their satellites. Microsoft vehemently hates GNU/Linux and it is actively attacking, although it may require some leaks and analysis to show. How low has Microsoft sunk? To quote DesktopLinux:

Clearly, Microsoft has increasingly been spreading fear, uncertainty, or doubt (FUD) about Linux, as it has about Apple’s Mac OS X in its recent “Laptop Hunters” TV ads. Last month, Dell Computer took it upon itself to stand up and refute Microsoft statements about high Linux netbook returns, saying that Dell’s Linux returns were roughly equivalent to those for Windows-based netbooks. Canonical has also questioned Microsoft’s statements about netbook returns. Meanwhile, anecdotal evidence suggests that Microsoft has been increasing its pressures on both PC vendors and retailers to steer clear of Linux netbooks.

Microsoft appears to be taking Linux seriously, despite the fact that by some counts Linux represents only a single percentage of the overall PC market (others place it higher, but not by much). In an SEC filing posted this summer, Microsoft added Linux distro vendors Canonical and Red Hat to its list of perceived competitors for Microsoft’s Client division.

Microsoft has been suffering financially for over a year. It’s largely because of GNU/Linux and other GPL-licensed software [1, 2]. But Microsoft will not compete; as history teaches, Microsoft will try to just squash the competition in all sort of nefarious ways.

“On the same day that CA blasted SCO, Open Source evangelist Eric Raymond revealed a leaked email from SCO’s strategic consultant Mike Anderer to their management. The email details how, surprise surprise, Microsoft has arranged virtually all of SCO’s financing, hiding behind intermediaries like Baystar Capital.”

Bruce Perens

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. As Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) Ramps Up Its Campaign Against Software Patent Trolls the Patent Microcosm Attacks the Messenger (EFF)

    In an effort to thwart Alice and the EFF (two birds, one stone) the patent microcosm goes behind the scenes and saturates the media with misleading articles, including attacks on the EFF itself



  2. In Sandoz v Amgen, the Federal Circuit is Again Found to Have Delivered Patent Injustice

    SCOTUS continues to disagree with CAFC on everything that it decides to reconsider, even the very latest decision (formally delivered earlier this month)



  3. The Supreme Court Can Reassert the Legitimacy of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Later This Year or Next Year

    What lawyers-centric media characterises as a risk to PTAB may actually be an opportunity to silence critics of PTAB and help it carry on squashing bogus patents



  4. The US Patent Office (USPTO) Should Now be Headed by Drew Hirshfeld, a Patent Examiner Who Rose to the Top, Not a Lawyer Like Joseph Matal

    Donald Trump's Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, pushes to the top the patent microcosm rather than technical people who are equipped with the knowledge and experience to run the Office as well as Michelle Lee did



  5. After Latest Supreme Court Rulings on Patents, Including Impression v Lexmark, the Federal Circuit is Left Disgraced

    Hostility towards the patent microcosm's patent maximalism, as witnessed at the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS), culminated in another decision and will soon result in yet more decisions, as SCOTUS has since then picked more patent cases to look at



  6. IBM, Apple and Facebook Pursue Software Patents in India in Defiance of the Ban

    Multinationals from the United States, or digital colonisers with ambitions to spy on and control finance, continue to behave as though Indian law is not applicable to their operations in India and repeatedly attempt to patent software anyway



  7. Wouter Pors Under Fire for Lying or Manipulating in the Name of the Unitary Patent (UPC)

    The argument between Team UPC and other patent professionals (without a lot of eggs in the UPC basket) heats up as Wouter Pors resorts to desperate measures and Bristows belatedly admits constitutional problems in the UK



  8. Systemic Injustice at the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Causes Serious Harm to Complainants' Health, Including EPO Complainants

    The high human cost of ILO's failure to fulfill its stated mission while pretending that it has things under control (that is clearly no longer the case, especially as far as EPO cases go)



  9. Links 24/6/2017: GNOME Music Improves, FreeBSD 11.1 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  10. Microsoft and Bill Gates Become More Actively Involved in Their Biggest Patent Troll (and World's Biggest Troll), Intellectual Ventures

    The world's largest patent troll, which reportedly operates (litigates) through literally thousands of shells, has received yet more financial aid from Microsoft and Bill Gates



  11. The STRONGER Patents Act is One Among Several New Pushes for Patent Chaos in the United States

    US patent law is being 'massaged' again, with bills being pushed forth that propose a return to Armageddon, undoing much of the progress made possible by the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA)



  12. SUEPO and the EPO's Central Staff Committee Condemn Battistelli's Latest Attempt to Change the Rules in Defiance of Laws

    Staff representatives at the EPO voice opposition to so-called 'reforms' which are neither desirable nor legal



  13. The Tide Has Turned Against the Unified Patent Court (UPC) and It Finally Looks as 'Alive' as TPP

    The UPC is now stuck if not dead because officials are realising -- however belatedly -- that this entire charade was from start to finish just a coup d'état of the patent 'industry'



  14. Potential Targets of European Patent Office (EPO) Whistleblowing

    Priorities for whistleblowing at the European Patent Office (EPO), which operates secretly and occasionally illegally, too



  15. Links 23/6/2017: Wine 2.11 Released, HPC Domination by GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  16. Primer to the Crisis and Scandals at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    An introduction to the chaotic state of what used to be the world's leading patent office and quickly became Europe's biggest embarrassment



  17. Workers of the European Patent Office (EPO) Are Going on Strike Again, Almost 90% Voted in Favour

    Thousands of brave EPO employees chose to cast a vote and make it known that they are in favour of another strike



  18. Benoît Battistelli Has Lost the Election at the EPO

    FFPE candidates (or moles from the yellow union) failed to enter the Central Staff Committee in spite of Battistelli's attempt to help them get in



  19. Emerging Threat to Patent Reforms at the USPTO

    Our plan of returning to coverage of US patent affairs in the wake of powerful lobbies that pursue patent maximalism



  20. You Know That the Unitary Patent (UPC) is in Huge Peril When Its Biggest Fans Admit It's Unlikely to Happen Even Next Year

    The tactics of Team UPC turn ugly as they personally target anyone who stands in their way, even a professor/judge who is courageous enough to state the obvious



  21. More Than Six Human Casualties Under Battistelli at the EPO, But the Human Toll Can Become a Lot Worse

    The bigger or much broader picture detailing the high cost of autocracy and mental torture at the EPO, where lives are ruined not only when these are ended and some key buildings pose severe threat to a lot of workers



  22. EPO's Elodie Bergot Calls Staff Suicide Just 'Passing Away', Pretends to Care

    How the EPO continues to mislead if not lie to staff, even when staff commits suicide -- a growing problem for Team Battistelli, whom some insiders hold accountable for these deaths



  23. The Administrative Tribunal of ILO Will Deliver EPO Judgments in Six Days

    Despite its old age (nearly a century), ILO's tradition when it comes to enforcing the law is anything but sterling, yet one can hope that it will stop its unproductive cat-and-mouse game with the EPO, where compliance is rare and actual judgments (not deferrals/referrals) are even rarer



  24. Links 21/6/2017: Red Hat's Numbers Are Up, New Debian Being Studied

    Links for the day



  25. Another Suicide Reported at the EPO While the Paid-for Media Focuses on 'European Inventor Award' Charade

    Puff pieces for Benoît Battistelli published aplenty while the European media refuses to deal with the reality -- not paid-for illusions -- at the European Patent Office



  26. Links 20/6/2017: Chuwi Lapbook, Linux 4.12 RC6, Mesa 17.1.3

    Links for the day



  27. At the European Inventor Award Ceremony Benoît Battistelli Lied to a Lot of Scientists and “Media Partners” About the UPC

    The Liar in Chief, Benoît Battistelli, still lives in a fantasy world or simply lies intentionally, which would be worse



  28. Contact Details for the EPO's Administrative Council Delegations

    List of Heads of Delegation and their E-mail addresses (used to be public information before Benoît Battistelli's oppressive regime or coup)



  29. Don't Forget to Vote for EPO Strike This Week (Thursday)

    A reminder that there's a vote on a strike at the European Patent Office later this week, giving an opportunity to rebut the "vocal minority" myth which Benoît Battistelli likes to spread



  30. European Patent Office (EPO) Whistleblowing Guidelines: Motivation and Impact of Leaks

    Advice on when to leak and what to leak for the desired effect, which is reformatory (though transparency and accountability)


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