03.20.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Microsoft and Its Front Group, Association for Competitive Technology (ACT), Organise Software Patents Lobby Events in Europe

Posted in ECMA, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Patents at 5:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

ACT Microsoft

Summary: The Microsoft PR effort to marginalise or illegalise Free software overseas carries on quietly (using proxies, as usual)

A

FEW days ago we wrote about Microsoft people engaging with and entering "Open Source", possibly in order to change its agenda (although it could innocently be just a side effect). This is known as entryism and if there is no shielding against it, then the outcome can be fatal. One has to be careful of the sort of 'monopoly' on Free/open source licence statistics from a Microsoft-sourced company called Black Duck for instance. (Dis)Information is power and this power tends to be misused when put in the wrong hands. Deception and advertising is how those entities make a living. Likewise, to let former Microsoft employees decide whose voice counts in “Open Source” is rather risky. Last year we showed that Microsoft lobbyists (notably Zuck from Association for Competitive Technology) managed to infiltrate an “Open Source” panel where they subverted collective opinion to affect policies. We took it up to the European Commission and wrote about this in:

  1. European Open Source Software Workgroup a Total Scam: Hijacked and Subverted by Microsoft et al
  2. Microsoft’s AstroTurfing, Twitter, Waggener Edstrom, and Jonathan Zuck
  3. Does the European Commission Harbour a Destruction of Free/Open Source Software Workgroup?
  4. The Illusion of Transparency at the European Parliament/Commission (on Microsoft)
  5. 2 Months and No Disclosure from the European Parliament
  6. After 3 Months, Europe Lets Microsoft-Influenced EU Panel be Seen
  7. Formal Complaint Against European Commission for Harbouring Microsoft Lobbyists
  8. ‘European’ Software Strategy Published, Written by Lobbyists and Multinationals
  9. Microsoft Uses Inside Influence to Grab Control, Redefine “Open Source”

The Web site called European Voice is currently promoting Microsoft’s lobbying event for software patents in Europe. At first we suspected that this Web site was something like OpenMainframe.org (Microsoft attack site against GNU/Linux), but upon closer inspection of previous articles we found just a mix of views, e.g. [1, 2, 3, 4, 5].

Nevertheless, why would such a site promote Microsoft’s agenda? It’s a Windows site and strangely enough, it is registered by The Economist:


Registrars.Registrant:                                          
 The Economist Newspaper Limited                                
 25 St James's Street                                           
 London,  SW1A 1HG                                              
 GB                                                             

 Domain name: EUROPEANVOICE.COM


 Administrative Contact:
    Manager, Domain  economistdomains@comlaude.com
    25 St James's Street                          
    London,  SW1A 1HG                             
    GB                                            
    +44.2078360070    Fax: +44.8700118187         

 Technical Contact:
    Administrator, DNS  dnsadmin@economist.com
    26 Red Lion Square                        
    London,  WC1R 4HQ                         
    GB                                        
    +44.2078360070    Fax: +44.8700118187     



 Registration Service Provider:
    Nom IQ Ltd (trading as Com Laude), admin@comlaude.com
    44-20-78360070                                       
    Address for Legal Service: Nom IQ Ltd (trading as Com Laude), 116 Long
    Acre, London, WC2E 9SU.  Com Laude is responsible for the registration,
    maintenance and management of this domain name.                        


 Registrar of Record: TUCOWS, INC.
 Record last updated on 12-Jan-2010.
 Record expires on 21-Jul-2012.     
 Record created on 21-Jul-1999.     

 Registrar Domain Name Help Center:

http://tucowsdomains.com/help/

 Domain servers in listed order:
    NSGBR.COMLAUDE.CO.UK
    NSUSA.COMLAUDE.NET
    NSSUI.COMLAUDE.CH


 Domain status: clientTransferProhibited
                clientUpdateProhibited

The event it is organising is supported by ACT (the Microsoft front group). The president of the FFII, Benjamin Henrion, publicly warns that “ACT continues to push for software patents in Europe, Innovation Summit at the end of the month in Brussels.” ACT is clearly a front for Microsoft and rather than deny this with counter arguments, Zuck and his colleagues repeatedly defame my character in their Web site. This attitude is telling and it is also used by Microsoft technical evangelists (sometimes a euphemism for AstroTurfers on the payroll). Defamation is what one gets for exposing Microsoft’s nature and modus operandi. Groklaw received similar treatment from SCO.

“ACT continues to push for software patents in Europe…”
      –Benjamin Henrion, FFII
Not only ACT supports this event though. Microsoft’s “eskills” project is there too. Here is some background (more in another page with proof that it’s a Microsoft project in this document/leaflet [PDF]), which ties the project to “Jan Muehlfeit, chairman of Microsoft Europe and co-chair of the European”. We wrote about him in [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] because of his lobbying in Europe. He is allegedly a former communist [1, 2], but that’s not the key point.

It is abundantly clear that Microsoft is actively working towards the goal of legalising software patents in Europe so that it can pursue Free software exclusion (taxing it or making it illegal).

The president of the FFII points to this new post and argues that “Neelie Kroes pushing for software patents in standards, Digital Commissioner Kroes proposes new EU policy of open standards” (she was lobbied by Microsoft).

From the introduction:

AN IMPORTANT POLICY PAPER, A Digital Agenda for Europe –
A policy for smart growth and innovation in a digital society, HAS BEEN LEAKED OF WHICH AN EXCERPT IS BELOW. DIGITAL AGENDA COMMISSIONER KROES HAS PROPOSED A SERIOUS MOVE OF THE EU TOWARD OPEN STANDARDS AND INTEROPERABILITY. THESE PROPOSALS ARE ALREADY BEING ATTACKED BY HER COLLEAGUES IN THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION WHO REPRESENT ENTERPRISE, COMMERCE AND INTERNAL MARKET. NEVERTHELESS, THESE PROPOSALS DESERVE CONSUMER AND CITIZEN SUPPORT.

Neelie Kroes has been making many mistakes regarding software patents as of late [1, 2]. We also learn that “DG Enterprise is pro software patents, and hostile to real open standards. They defend patent holders such as Philips and BSA.” In the following new post we are reminded that in the UK at least, software patents are already forcing their way into the system.

In simplified terms the UK Intellectual Property Office (UK IPO) on the other hand follows law and practice in the UK instead where a patent for software can be granted only where the software has a technical effect.

In summary, Microsoft has not given up on changing EU laws to discriminate against Free software. This is a major issue that a lot of GNU/Linux-oriented Web sites continue to ignore. Sometimes, those who point this out are accused of sensationalism or FUD; such accusations are only proof of gullibility and they are counter productive.

“[The EPO] can’t distinguish between hardware and software so the patents get issued anyway”, —Marshall Phelps, IAM: Microsoft to have 50,000 patents within two years, Phelps reveals

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

A Single Comment

  1. uberVU - social comments said,

    March 20, 2010 at 6:57 pm

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Identica by schestowitz: #Microsoft and Its Front Group #ACT Organise Software Patents Lobby Events in #Europe http://ur1.ca/qpjf

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Links 1/12/2021: Tux Paint 0.9.27 and WordPress 5.9 Beta

    Links for the day



  2. [Meme] EPO Administrative Council Believing EPO-Bribed 'Media' (IAM Still Shilling and Lying for Cash)

    IAM continues to do what brings money from EPO management and Team UPC, never mind if it is being disputed by the patent examiners themselves



  3. The EPO's Mythical “Gap” Has Been Found and It's Bonuses for People Who Use Pure Fiction to Steal From Patent Examiners

    The phony president who has the audacity to claim there's a budget gap is issuing millions of euros for his enablers to enjoy; weeks ahead of the next meeting of national delegates the Central Staff Committee (CSC) tells them: "Events show that the delegations’ concerns about functional allowances have materialised. The lack of transparency and inflation of the budget envelope gives rise to the suspicion that high management is pursuing a policy of self-service at the expense of EPO staff, which is difficult to reconcile with the Office’s claimed cost-saving policy, and to the detriment of the whole Organisation."



  4. Video: Making the Internet a Better Place for People, Not Megacorporations

    Following that earlier list of suggested improvements for a freedom-respecting Internet, here's a video and outline



  5. Links 30/11/2021: KDE Plasma 5.23.4, 4MLinux 38.0, Long GitHub Downtime, and Microsoft's CEO Selling Away Shares

    Links for the day



  6. A Concise Manifesto For Freedom-Respecting Internet

    An informal list of considerations to make when reshaping the Internet to better serve people, not a few corporations that are mostly military contractors subsidised by the American taxpayers



  7. Freenode.net Becomes a 'Reddit Clone' and Freenode IRC is Back to Old Configurations After Flushing Down Decades' Worth of User/Channel Data and Locking/Shutting Out Longtime Users

    Freenode is having another go; after “chits” and “jobs” (among many other ideas) have clearly failed, and following the change of daemon (resulting in massive loss of data and even security issues associated with impersonation) as well as pointless rebrand as “Joseon”, the domain Freenode.net becomes something completely different and the IRC network reopens to all



  8. Jack Dorsey's Decision is a Wake-up Call: Social Control Media is Just a Toxic Bubble

    The state of the World Wide Web (reliability, preservation, accessibility, compatibility etc.) was worsened a lot more than a decade ago; with social control media that’s nowadays just a pile of JavaScript programs we’re basically seeing the Web gradually turning into another Adobe Flash (but this time they tell us it’s a “standard”), exacerbating an already-oversized ‘bubble economy’ where companies operate at a loss while claiming to be worth hundreds of billions (USD) and generally serve imperialistic objectives by means of manipulation like surveillance, selective curation, and censorship



  9. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 29, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, November 29, 2021



  10. Links 29/11/2021: NuTyX 21.10.5 and CrossOver 21.1.0

    Links for the day



  11. This Apt Has Super Dumbass Powers. Linus Sebastian and Pop_OS!

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  12. [Meme] Trying to Appease Provocateurs and Borderline Trolls

    GNU/Linux isn’t just a clone of Microsoft Windows and it oughtn’t be a clone of Microsoft Windows, either; some people set themselves up for failure, maybe by intention



  13. Centralised Git Hosting Has a Business Model Which is Hostile Towards Developers' Interests (in Microsoft's Case, It's an Attack on Reciprocal Licensing and Persistent Manipulation)

    Spying, censoring, and abusing projects/developers/users are among the perks Microsoft found in GitHub; the E.E.E.-styled takeover is being misused for perception manipulation and even racism, so projects really need to take control of their hosting (outsourcing is risky and very expensive in the long run)



  14. Links 29/11/2021: FWUPD's 'Best Known Configuration' and Glimpse at OpenZFS 3.0

    Links for the day



  15. President Biden Wants to Put Microsofter in Charge of the Patent Office, Soon to Penalise Patent Applicants Who Don't Use Microsoft's Proprietary Formats

    The tradition of GAFAM or GIAFAM inside the USPTO carries on (e.g. Kappos and Lee; Kappos lobbies for Microsoft and IBM, whereas Lee now works for Amazon/Bezos after a career at Google); it's hard to believe anymore that the USPTO exists to serve innovators rather than aggressive monopolists, shielding their territory by patent threats (lawsuits or worse aggression) and cross-licensing that's akin to a cartel



  16. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part VIII — Mr. Graveley's Long Career Serving Microsoft's Agenda (Before Hiring by Microsoft to Work on GitHub's GPL Violations Machine)

    Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley was promoting .NET (or Mono) since his young days; his current job at Microsoft is consistent with past harms to GNU/Linux, basically pushing undesirable (except to Microsoft) things to GNU/Linux users; Tomboy used to be the main reason for distro ISOs to include Mono



  17. Dr. Andy Farnell on Teaching Cybersecurity in an Age of 'Fake Security'

    By Dr. Andy Farnell



  18. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 28, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, November 28, 2021



  19. Links 29/11/2021: Linux 5.16 RC3 and Lots of Patent Catch-up

    Links for the day



  20. By 2022 0% of 'News' Coverage About Patents Will Be Actual Journalism (Patent Litigation Sector Has Hijacked the World Wide Web to Disseminate Self-Promotional Misinformation)

    Finding news about the EPO is almost impossible because today’s so-called ‘news’ sites are in the pockets of Benoît Battistelli, António Campinos, and their cohorts who turned the EPO into a hub of litigation, not science; this is part of an international (worldwide) problem because financial resources for journalism have run out, and so the vacuum is filled/replaced almost entirely by Public Relations (PR) and marketing



  21. Trying to Appease Those Who Never Liked Free Software or Those Who Blindly Loved All Patent Monopolies to Begin With

    It’s crystal clear that trying to appease everyone, all the time, is impossible; in the case of the EPO, for example, we hope that exposing Team Battistelli/Campinos helps raise awareness of the harms of patent maximalism, and when speaking about Free software — whilst occasionally bashing the alternatives (proprietary) — we hope to convince more people to join the “Good Fight”



  22. Links 28/11/2021: Laravel 8.73 Released, GitHub Offline for Hours

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, November 27, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, November 27, 2021



  24. Links 27/11/2021: Nvidia’s DLSS Hype and Why GNU/Linux Matters

    Links for the day



  25. [Meme] Linus Gabriel Sebastian Takes GNU/Linux for a (Tail)'Spin'

    If you’re trying to prove that GNU/Linux is NOT Windows, then “haha! Well done…”



  26. GNU/Linux is for Freedom and It'll Gain Many Users When (or Where) People Understand What Software (or Computing) Freedom Means

    Software that respects people's freedom (and by extension privacy as well) is an alluring proposition; those who choose to try GNU/Linux for the wrong reasons are likely the wrong target audience for advocates



  27. Amid Reports of Microsoft's Competition Crimes in Europe...

    European companies are complaining, but they seem to overlook the principal aspect of an imperialistic system with bottomless pockets (almost 30 trillion dollars in debt already; US national debt soared again last month); Microsoft is shielded by a political system with military (“defence”) as bailout budget to help cushion international expansion for data grab and technical leverage, as we've seen in the case of EPO (this is all political, not technical, and should thus be treated as a political/corruption issue)



  28. Is Linus Trolling the GNU/Linux Community?

    This new video responds to what many sites have been provoked into amplifying



  29. Links 27/11/2021: Tux Paint 0.9.27 and SeaMonkey 1.1.19 in EasyOS

    Links for the day



  30. [Meme] Keeping Our Distance From Microsoft

    The OSI is the dagger, the Linux Foundation is the knife, and many others are the sword by which Microsoft tries to get into the very heart of GNU/Linux and extinguish the Free software movement


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