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. The United States Has Gotten Over Software Patents

    A roundup of new articles about software patents in the United States, 2 years into the post-Alice era (the US Supreme Court deeming patents on software too abstract to have merit)



  2. More Lies From President Benoît Battistelli and the EPO Crisis Which Continues to Deepen

    The European Patent Office (EPO), collectively speaking, is still wrestling with a Battistelli infiltration (a circle of high-level managers) which habitually lies and viciously attacks those who dare counter these lies



  3. Links 27/8/2016: Torvalds and GPL, “DOD Must Embrace Open-Source Software”

    Links for the day



  4. Links 26/8/2016: Maru OS Resurfaces, Android More Reliable Than 'i' Things, PC-BSD Becomes TrueOS

    Links for the day



  5. Good Job, David Kappos, Says the 'Boss' (IBM)

    Responses to the latest call against Alice (eliminator of many software patents), courtesy of the man from IBM (still paid by IBM) who was responsible for the policy that blindly approved a lot of software patents in the US



  6. Being for Patent Quality or Against Patenting Excess Does Not Make You Anti-Patents

    Like IAM, which tries to portray sceptics and critics of software patents as "anti-patents", IP Watchdog (or Watchtroll as we call it) is 'trolling' the Electronic Frontier Foundation, simply because it expressed an opinion that patent maximalists cannot tolerate



  7. Erosion of Patent Quality Enables Patent Extortion With Large Portfolios of Low Validity Rate

    Revisiting the EPO's vision of poor patent examination and the effect of discriminatory granting practices, favouring patent bullies such as Microsoft (which actively attacks Linux using low-quality and usually pure software patents)



  8. The EPO's Francesco Zaccà Presenting in Turin Alongside Patent Trolls (Like the Patent Mafia Sisvel) and Lobbyists/Front Groups for Software Patents, UPC

    Benjamin Henrion (FFII) on seeing the EPO alongside patent trolls and other nefarious actors, doing what they do best, which is undermining public interests and harming patent quality



  9. The EPO, USPTO, and Patent Microcosm Peddle Myths About Patents in Public Universities and Research

    Tackling some of the commonly-spread myths about patents as "saving lives" and "promoting research" (in practice leading to the death of poor people and promoting trolls)



  10. Large Corporations' Lobbyist David Kappos Disgraces Former Employer USPTO by Meddling in Their Affairs on Software Patents, Downplaying the Supreme Court

    The latest lobbying from David Kappos, who blatantly exploits his connections in patent circles to promote software patents and work towards their resurgence after Alice v CLS Bank



  11. Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice Calls the European Patent Office “Rotten”, Other Sources Scrutinise Recent Moves

    The patent office which was once known for being the best bar none is rotting under the Frenchman Benoît Battistelli, who made himself and his friends the main clients of the Office



  12. PTAB Emerges as Hero of USPTO Because Quality of Patents Improves, Software Patents Are Effectively Dead (or Dying Once Reassessed)

    With help from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) -- not just patent courts -- software patents drop like flies by the thousands



  13. Creative Technology, Now Operating in 'Patent Troll' Mode, Shot Down by the ITC; Jawbone Too Shot Down

    Some good news from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), which may have put an end to Creative's new war on Android (using old patents)



  14. Corporate Media in India Misrepresents Startups to Push for Software Patents

    A parade of misinformation as seen in Indian (but English-speaking) press this week as questions about patentability of software resurface



  15. Links 25/8/2016: Linux Turns 25, NetworkManager Turns 1.4

    Links for the day



  16. Links 24/8/2016: More From LinuxCon, Uganda Wants FOSS

    Links for the day



  17. Links 23/8/2016: GNOME 3.22 Beta, Android 7.0 Nougat

    Links for the day



  18. The Linux Foundation Gives Microsoft (Paid-for) Keynote Position While Microsoft Extorts (With Patents) Lenovo and Motorola Over Linux Use

    This morning's reminder that Nadella is just another Ballmer (with a different face); Motorola and Lenovo surrender to Microsoft's patent demands and will soon put Microsoft spyware/malware on their Linux-powered products to avert costly legal battles



  19. Not Just President Battistelli: EPO Vice-Presidents Are Still Intentionally Misrepresenting EPO Staff

    Evidence serving to show that EPO Vice-Presidents are still intentionally misrepresenting EPO staff representatives and misleading everyone in order to defend Battistelli



  20. Battistelli the Liar Causes a Climate of Confrontation in French Politics, Lies About Patent Quality (Among Many Other Things)

    Battistelli's lies are coming under increased scrutiny inside and outside the European Patent Office (EPO), where patent quality has been abandoned in order to artificially elevate figures



  21. The Collapse of Software Patents and Patent Law Firms Trying to “Overcome” Alice

    The United States continues its gradual crackdown on software patents (which are viewed as abstract and thus unpatentable), whereas in Europe things are murkier than ever



  22. Apple's Patent Wars Against Android/Linux Make Patent Trolls Stronger

    Apple's insistence that designs should be patentable could prove to be collectively expensive, as patent trolls would then use a possible SCOTUS nod to launch litigation campaigns



  23. Links 22/8/2016: Linux 4.8 RC3, Linux Mint 18 “Sarah” KDE Beta

    Links for the day



  24. Links 21/8/2016: Apple and Microsoft Down, Systemd Spreading to Mount

    Links for the day



  25. Links 20/8/2016: Android Domination, FSFE summit 2016

    Links for the day



  26. Patents Roundup: Trolls Dominate Litigation, PTAB Crushes Patents, Patent Box Regime Persists, and OIN Explains Itself

    Another roundup of patent news from around the Web with special focus on software patenting



  27. The Cost/Toll of the 'New' EPO and Where All That Money Goes or Comes From

    The European Patent Office has become a servant of the rich and powerful (including large foreign corporations) and even its own employees now pay the price associated with misguided new policies (or 'reforms' as Battistelli habitually refers to these)



  28. Links 19/8/2016: Linux Mint With KDE, Linux Foundation's PNDA

    Links for the day



  29. The End of an Era at the USPTO as Battistelli-Like (EPO) Granting Policies Are Over

    The United States is seeing the potency of patents -- especially software patents (which make up much of the country's troll cases) -- challenged by courts and by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB)



  30. Battistelli's European Patent Office Goes to the United States to Speak About the UPC and Software Patents

    The European Patent Office is showing its utter contempt -- not just disregard -- for the very fundamental rules that put it in its place and brought it into existence


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