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

10.20.10

Mobbyists and Lobbyists (Notably BSA) Marginalise Free Software in Europe Using Lies About RAND

Posted in Europe, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Patents, RAND, Standard at 11:44 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

BSA

Summary: The lobby for software patents inside standards that everyone must implement is growing in Europe and those who are behind it are also tied to Microsoft

ACT, the Microsoft pressure group which fakes the voice of European SMEs, is getting some backup from other lobbyists who push Microsoft’s interests in Europe, especially when it comes to software patents.

Using “SMEs” as an example or excuse, now it’s Dewar who is promoting a back door to software patents in Europe: [via FFII]

“There are a whole host of policies in the flagship which will favour SMEs. On intellectual property, for example, the EU patent would dramatically reduce the cost of patenting in Europe, which would particularly benefit SMEs. But in addition, the commission will make proposals for a European knowledge market for patents and licensing.

“The EU patent plus the European market place for IPs would allow SMEs both to patent more of their inventions, and also to trade and exchange them on equal terms with larger companies,” Dewar told the meeting.

She went on, “This is particularly critical in sectors such as semi-conductors and telecoms where companies need to bundle together many existing technologies and therefore require access rights to a range of IPRs.

Dewar probably means well, but she needs to understand what Vincent Van Quickenborne ought to understand too [1, 2, 3]. The unifications they crave provide an opening through which software patents can reach Europe. It’s no coincidence that Microsoft’s lobbying blog and lobbying group ACT both lobby for it. This would be bad for software freedom.

Generally speaking, a lot of disinformation agents of Microsoft appear to be multiplying. The very GNU/Linux-hostile Jeff Gould is back to his old routine after a couple of years away. Microsoft Florian is back too and having already spread disinformation about RAND over a months ago he is doing it again. LWN should reconsider its policy because it has been giving a platform for this mobbyist to spread lies and now it is feeding Gould as well, despite a consistent record of attacks on GNU/Linux.

The Gerson Lehrman Group’s site is carrying this missive from Jeff Gould giving a rather wild-eyed analyst view of Oracle’s enterprise kernel update.

The mobbyists have begun more transparently adopting the same tactics and party line as the Business Software Alliance (BSA). Glyn Moody says that the “US Attorney General parrots BSA’s nonsense about software piracy…”

The BSA is deceiving for living, not just bullying businesses. Well, that’s how politics works, too. The software landscape may be no exception after all.

Carlo Piana writes: “I’m disturbed by claims that RAND is compatible with FS. It is NOT, by&large, it’s against Freedom # 2.”

FSFE says: “exactly. We (FSFE) are rebutting BSA wanting all RAND acceptable. Not arguing “#swpats MIGHT be compatible w/ FOSS””

“I’m disturbed by claims that RAND is compatible with FS.”
      –Carlo Piana
Andrew Katz, a lawyer, has already put the kibosh on the mobbyists’ lies about RAND. He writes: “my personal view is that RAND is against all freedom in spirit, and against some licences in word (e.g. GPL)”

Piana adds: “in other words, yes, if you imply open standards as in FSFE def. (incl. no running royalties forever)”

This won’t stop Microsoft Florian, for example, from lying. He is still pushing the same line as BSA and ACT, Microsoft’s front groups on these issues; the difference is that he pretends to be pro-FOSS (which he is not) and against software patents, but he is pushing the BSA’s party line. Some ‘reporters’, only/mostly in ZDNet on the face of it, are still willing to chew the falsehoods from lobbyists and mobbyists. It’s just sad. Regarding the BSA-FSFE altercations [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] David Meyer writes: “Lobbyists clash over open standards in Europe” (it makes it sound like FSFE is a lobbying group).

In its letter to the Commission (PDF), dated 7 October, the BSA called for “an express endorsement of technologies made available on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms”, rather than the preference for open specifications that apparently exists in the draft EIF revision.

The BSA said a tilt towards open specs would “undermine the innovativeness of European standards”, adding that the recommendation suggested that such standards should be “free of intellectual property rights”. The organisation also pointed to many technologies that are licensed on FRAND terms, such as Wi-Fi, GSM and MPEG.

The FSFE sent its own letter to the Commission on Friday, saying the BSA’s letter showed “a gross misconception of standards, their role and their working”.

“Business Software Alliance pressuring the European Commission to remove support for Open Standards,” says this tweet which refers to the FEFE’s ongoing struggle to restore or promote software freedom in Europe. In a new post titled “Battling the Hydra” (by Karsten Gerloff) there are some updates on the subject and Dana Blankenhorn is still acting as Microsoft Florian’s sidekick. In a new post titled “How open source advocates beat themselves” (Summary says “Calling someone else “IBM Stu” or “Microsoft Dave” is what gives vendors their power over open source”) Blankenhorn seems to dismiss FSFE as just a lobbyist (Microsoft Florian loves throwing blows at FSFE/FFII, claiming them to be IBM lobbyists). To quote part of this awful post which looks like it was ghostwritten by or written in the spirit of Microsoft Florian:

But there was a time, long before ZDNet, when I did some consulting. A company I worked for had contracts with some very big vendors indeed, under strict non disclosure agreements (NDAs).

I learned a lot from those contacts, about the decision-making process within those clients. Did it make me their lapdog? Not at all.

My point is that the assumption of corruption in others does grave damage to the cause. The use of rumors — calling someone else “IBM Stu” or “Microsoft Dave” — is what gives vendors their power over open source.

Not surprisingly it soon turns out that Blankenhorn and Microsoft Florian have just met. “Pretty crazy” called it someone who told us about it via mail. “Has FOSS lost the battle against patents” is the post under which Blankenhorn reveals his affinity for Microsoft Florian.

It’s Florian Mueller (right), and he wrote it on his FOSSPatents blog last week, shortly after I met with him in Munich.

Well, at least he no longer pretends to be pro-FOSS. And the “Linux and Open Source” blog at ZDNet has become somewhat of a platform for Microsoft Florian to spout out his inaccuracies and lies. What a shameful situation. The FFII has meanwhile responded to the acts of the BSA; it labels it “espionage” and says: “Like a thief returning the product: BSA sent the Commissioners a letter commenting on unreleased official drafts.”

In summary, Microsoft’s lobby for software patents in Europe (mostly through RAND) is gaining steam and those who are behind it are in Microsoft’s pocket, as expected.

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. Links 30/4/2017: Linux 4.11 Ready Shortly, Unreal Engine 4.16 Preview, Kirigami 2.1 is Out

    Links for the day



  2. High Courts in the United States Still Neither Grappling/Interfering With PTAB Nor Overturning <em>Alice</em>

    In spite of unprecedented pressure from Watchtroll, Dennis Crouch and other prominent elements of the patent microcosm in the United States, software patents continue to enjoy no backing from the courts while the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) accelerates its crackdown on such patents



  3. Hailo and Qualcomm Both Want to Profit From Software Patents Rather Than Actual Products

    The (mis)use of software patents for "easy money" is being challenged and it does not look particularly encouraging to those who rely on such patents in 2017



  4. “Spectator” and “The Patent Scam” (New Site/Movie) Tackle the Patent Trolls Epidemic

    The mainstream criticism of patent trolls, culminating even in movies like "The Patent Scam" and others, might be enough to sway public opinion on the subject



  5. Unified Patent Propaganda Courtesy of a Cabal of Firms That Constructed the UPC

    The Unified Patent Court (UPC), a proposed patent litigation system which would harm European industry for the benefit of law firms and their largest clients (abroad), is only being boosted by few selfish and patently dishonest stakeholders, including/enjoying the EPO's massive PR/lobbying budget (FTI Consulting)



  6. Twitter Shadowbans Critics of the EPO Now?

    Criticise the EPO's European Inventor Award 2017 (in a way that becomes visible), get shadowbanned by Twitter (rendering this criticism invisible)



  7. RecogniCorp v Nintendo is Another Nail in the Coffin of Software Patents in the United States

    A precedential new decision against software patents is terrible news for the patent microcosm -- something for them to spin or moan about for a long time to come



  8. Battistelli is Busy Securing the Vote of Countries Whose Support and Tickets Are Easy to 'Buy'

    Battistelli’s banana republic politics and tricks are viewed as his ticket to endless ‘leadership’ (domination by sheer force) of a sinking patent office, whose rules he repeatedly breaks (including lack of eligibility to run it, for multiple reasons)



  9. Patent Snake Oil From Brunel University London and PatentDive

    The ludicrous notion of replacing patent examiners (or searches by humans) with machines is seriously considered by some who should know better... but don't



  10. This is How 'Independent' the Boards of Appeal Are Under Battistelli

    A rather revealing new factoid about the interview that never happened (potentially contradicting a previous one with Battistelli), or why it did not happen



  11. Links 29/4/2017: Endless OS, Pinebook, and New Mozilla Foundation Board Members

    Links for the day



  12. Links 28/4/2017: Subsurface 4.6.4, GNOME Shell & Mutter 3.25.1

    Links for the day



  13. Kather Augenstein and Bristows Shift Attention to Germany in an Effort to Ram the Dying UPC Down Everyone's Throats

    Down the throat, hopes Team UPC, the Unitary Patent system will go, even though Britain cannot ratify, throwing the whole thing into grave uncertainty



  14. United for Patent Reform Defends USPTO Director Michelle Lee From Attacks by the Patent Microcosm

    Michelle Lee is finally (if not belatedly) shielded by a bunch of large technology companies; The deep-pocketed industry finally steps in line with our position, which is usually when things turn out the way we advocate for



  15. Team UPC and CIPA Are Lobbying, Publishing Puff Pieces, and Rewriting the Law for Unitary Patent (UPC) Behind Closed Doors

    A collection of the latest news and views on the UPC, which is being lied about by those who stand to benefit from it and is probably going nowhere because Brexit means that the UK stays out, in which case it must be reset and pertinent ratifications done all over again



  16. China's Suffering From Patent Maximalism Has Europe Forewarned

    The parasitic elements inside China -- those that just want lots of litigation (even if from patent trolls) -- are winning over, much to the detriment of the Chinese economy, and Team UPC threatens to do the same in Europe with help from Battistelli



  17. Links 27/4/2017: Mesa 17.0.5 RC1, Git 2.13.0 RC1, and Linkerd 1.0

    Links for the day



  18. The Latest Expensive PR Blitz of the EPO, Led by Jana Mittermaier and Rainer Osterwalder Under the 'European Inventor Award' Banner

    The PR agencies of the Corsican in Chief, who appears to be buying political support rather than earning any, are very busy this week, as yet another reputation laundering campaign kicks off



  19. Links 26/4/2017: SMPlayer 17.4.2, Libreboot Wants to Rejoin GNU

    Links for the day



  20. PatentShield is Not the Solution and It Won't Protect Google/Android From Patent Trolls Like Microsoft's

    A new initiative called "PatentShield" is launched, but it's yet another one of those many initiatives (Peer-to-Patent and the likes of it, LOT Network, OIN, PAX etc.) that serve to distract from the real and much simpler solutions



  21. Patent Quality Crisis and Unprecedented Trouble at the European Patent Office (EPO) Negatively Affect Legitimate Companies in the US As Well

    The granting en masse of questionable patents by the EPO (patent maximalism) is becoming a liability and growing risk to companies which operate not only in Europe but also elsewhere



  22. Blog 'Takeovers' by Bristows and Then Censorship: Now This Firm Lies About the Unitary Patent (UPC) and Then Deletes Comments That Point Out the Errors

    Not only are Bristows employees grabbing the mic in various high-profile IP blogs for the purpose of UPC promotion (by distortion of facts); they also actively suppress critics of the UPC



  23. Links 25/4/2017: Kali Linux 2017.1 Released, NSA Back Doors in Windows Cause Chaos

    Links for the day



  24. Astoundingly, IP Kat Has Become a Leading Source of UPC and Battistelli Propaganda

    The pro-UPC outlets, which enjoy EPO budget (i.e. stakeholders' money), are becoming mere amplifiers of Benoît Battistelli and his right-hand UPC woman Margot Fröhlinger, irrespective of actual facts



  25. EPO Fiasco to be Discussed in German Local Authority (Bavarian Parliament) Some Time Today as the Institution Continues Its Avoidable Collapse

    Conflict between management and staff -- a result of truly destructive strategies and violations of the law by Benoît Battistelli -- continues to escalate and threatens to altogether dismantle the European Patent Office (EPO)



  26. In the US and Elsewhere, Qualcomm's Software Patents Are a Significant Tax Everyone Must Pay

    The state of the mobile market when companies such as Qualcomm, which don't really produce anything, take a large piece of the revenue pie



  27. In South Asia, Old Myths to Promote Patent Maximalism, Courtesy of the Patent Microcosm

    The latest example of software patents advocacy and patent 'parades' in India, as well as something from IPOS in Singapore



  28. Links 24/4/2017: Linux 4.11 RC8, MPV 0.25

    Links for the day



  29. Why Authorities in the Netherlands Need to Strip the EPO of Immunity and Investigate Fire Safety Violations

    How intimidation and crackdown on the staff representatives at the EPO may have led to lack of awareness (and action) about lack of compliance with fire safety standards



  30. Insensitivity at the EPO’s Management – Part IX: Testament to the Fear of an Autocratic Regime

    A return to the crucial observation and a reminder of the fact that at the EPO it takes great courage to say the truth nowadays


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