04.29.10

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Software Patents Imperialism

Posted in Microsoft, Patents at 2:37 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“My message to the patent world is: Either get back to the doctrines of forces of nature or face the elimination of your system.” —Hartmut Pilch, Paraflows 06

Victoria

Summary: Further evidence that those supporting software patents are front groups of giant corporations (seeking to tighten a monopoly) and patent lawyers who treat software patents as additional income

FORTUNATELY for the world, software patents are illegal in the vast majority of places; there are ‘tricks’ for sneaking software patents in, but having them tested in court is another thing altogether.

Microsoft is all about software patents now that it sank into debt and it is trying to find a new business model (the old cash cows are dying along with the rest [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7]). According to the NZ Herald, those who are lobbying for software patents in New Zealand are “multinationals” like Microsoft, which is connected to NZICT [1, 2, 3]. To quote from this new article:

Multinationals protest New Zealand’s removal of software patents

[...]

The New Zealand Information and Communications Technology Group (NZICT), whose members include Microsoft, IBM, Cisco and other multinationals as well as New Zealand software developers and exporters, says the committee got it wrong.

New Zealand should reject this type of imperialism with software patents. All these will do is stifle NZ developers and instead have them rely on binaries from abroad. Not only front groups of multinationals play this game though; as we pointed out several times before, patent lawyers too are thirsty for software patents because it’s just another type of patents that means more business to them (application, consultation, and litigation).

Here again is another new example of patent lawyers cheering software patents.

Meanwhile, software patents still appear to be going strong. Let’s take a look this month at a few software patents naming New England inventors.

They sure like saying “inventors”; they also say that software patents “protect” and promote “innovation” (although it is not clear how spending time filing and gardening paperwork contributes to innovation in software).

Here is another interesting post about ACTA and patents as well as a reminder that China has patent problems too.

Ms Lin writes: “The report in Shenzhen-based Jing Bao quoted Fang Zhen, marketing manager of Crastal Technology (Shenzhen) Company, saying that some of the company’s patented products were found to be copied overseas and then imported back to China.”

It is worth adding that this Chinese blog promotes patents, it doesn’t criticise them. Lawyers always bemoan a patent insufficiency.

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