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

04.19.11

OSI President: Microsoft Florian is Spouting Nonsense (About CPTN/Microsoft-Novell Patents)

Posted in Microsoft, OSI, Patents at 4:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Michael Tiemann

Summary: Michael Tiemann says that Florian Müller “proceeds to spout nonsense” after insulting the Open Source Initiative (OSI) regarding defence of Free/Open Source software

MICROSOFT is lusting for Novell’s patents and Microsoft Florian keeps licking his lips over the possibility that Microsoft et al. will get some so-called “FOSS patents” to threaten Linux with. It’s rather transparent based on what he writes, especially the reckless gloat (and insults) in his Twitter stream. He’s not alone though.

IDG’s Jon Brodkin, known to us for the Microsoft whitewashing efforts (we recently gave examples [1, 2, 3] and he too speaks to Florian), says that “U.S. Antitrust will review Microsoft/Novell patent sale for 30 more days”. Florian is meanwhile spreading disinformation; they try to rush the judgment or push this bit of disinformation while Florian deceives people (there is an inaccurate CPTN report in ZDNet UK, maybe as a result of this) when in fact even his online friend Maureen O’Gara realises that there is no clearance. Brodkin, a Microsoft blogger, is spinning it as defence for Microsoft (“Shield… From Lawsuits”) [1, 2]; it is arguably this headline which makes him a fan of the deal, just like Florian. The patent deal is atrocious (FSF and OSI agree and even work jointly against it, in an unprecedented fashion), whereas Microsoft boosters are predicting or heralding its success before it’s even cleared. Are they trying to influence the decision by generating fallacious claims? Truthfully, we wrote about this before. Since the pro-Microsoft crowd is so eager to see those patents falling into Microsoft’s arms, we know for sure that the FSF and OSI are correct and to quote a response from “barney”, aimed at Brodkin’s spin (headline is “Novell Patent Sale to Shield Microsoft, Apple, EMC and Oracle From Lawsuits”):

Shield? don’t you mean sword

I really don’t see Microsoft, Apple, nor Oracle being passive with regards to using those patents and they way I see it, they will be used to cut down open source technology( aka Linux ) based products.

There is only one resoponse and one that does not take into account the companies’ prior attitude towards competition and how they use patents. They are aggressors. Meanwhile, the propaganda machine of Microsoft Florian kicks into gear again and the head of the OSI responds:

Florian Mueller accuses that the OSI is spouting nonsense, and then proceeds to spout nonsense. I’m calling him on it.
The FCO has clearly stated the conditions under which a deal can and must be blocked, which is when when the CPTN transaction would “create or strengthen a dominant position of one or several CPTN-investors on the markets on which they are active.” Florian thinks that is an impossibly high bar, because according to him, there’s really no way regulators can be expected to do their jobs. I reject such a cynical conclusion. And I am heartened that the regulators in both the US and EU are reading carefully both the legal requirements and the facts and evidence of the transaction. We have already seen a huge change to the structure of the CPTN transaction, indicating that there were clearly some very serious issues with the first structuring.
In the world of open source, a rejected patch is never automatically accepted merely because some random changes were made and the patch resubmitted. The patch must address the substantive issues, and must do so in a way that is accepted by the community. It is accepted when the *maintainer* says its good enough, not when the submitter claims it’s good enough.
The revised proposed CPTN transaction did address one of the many concerns raised by the OSI, but it leaves most of the concerns unaddressed. The FCO requested our input–as members of the community–and we have given our answer. We should let the FCO do their job, and not second-guess their authority, their ability, or their integrity.

As the next commenter pointed out:

I wish this summary, like most on Linux Today, had identified the author of the article. This is an important piece of information that I use when deciding whether or not to click through and read an article.

And the next one after that:

Thanks for that informative post, Michael. When is saw the link was to FOSS Patents, I decided to avoid clicking.

Barnie asks: “Florian – do you feed any of the Microsoft patent deals are justified?”

Over the last few years we have seen Microsoft make deals (it would seem by threat of legal action) extract patent deals from the likes of HTC, TomTom and many others.
Do you believe any of these deals are justified and do you believe the current system is working?

Florian appears a couple of times in this thread, only to insist on the same spin and distortion of facts (his main tactic, also against messengers he does not agree with, e.g. Groklaw and Techrights). Rainer Weikusat closes this conversation with:

> 1) If it were up to me, patents of that kind would
> not be granted in the first place.
.
But it isn’t ‘up to you’, meaning, any statement on
this from your side is entirely hypothetical: No
‘reality check’ of its truthfulness will ever occur
and in the context of the actual question, it is also
completely irrelevant.
.
> I don’t believe that it’s reasonable to grant
> 20-year monopolies on software-related ideas. This
> view is independent from whether we’re talking about
> a Microsoft FAT, Apple multitouch, Oracle virtual
> machine, Amazon one-click or Google Doodle patent
> (yes, they patented that one and the patent was
> granted recently, and in my view it’s the most
> abusrd one in this list).
.
It is at least about some original invention, as
opposed tasking someone with ‘design and implement
a way to add “long filenames” to a DOS-directory
in a way which will not disturb software written to
use 8.3 names’ (something any decent programmer should
be easily capable of) and then patenting the result
of this work in order to hamper independent,
interoperable implementations.
.
> 2) Given that such patents do exist nonetheless,
> it’s the normal course of business that right
> holders want to use them. If they grant licenses on
> reasonable terms, that’s infinitely better than any
> strategic exclusionary use of patents
.
The interesting question, however, is what precisely
constitutes ‘a reasonable term’. For instance, legally,
Linux is prohibited from being fully interoperable
with systems creating filesystems using the ‘long name
addition method’ patented by Microsoft, except
insofar proprietary kernel modules of legally dubious
status are used. And in my opinion, this is ‘strategic,
exclusionary use of patents’: While a license to use
this ‘invention’ may be available to ‘companies’ it
is only granted subject to the condition that said
companies to not participiate in large-scale
collaborative development efforts Microsoft considers
to be potentially detrimental to its ongoing business
success. This also conveniently ignores the fact that
a lot of ‘development’ is not done by ‘companies’
producing software because of its ‘sale value’ (and
thus, capable of paying royalties).

The legitimacy of Microsoft Florian in FOSS circles which he pretends to champion is at an all-time low. Anything which could be attributed to him in the past is being superseded by unacceptable deception and hostility towards software freedom, including crass behaviour and language. Florian the author is not Florian the lobbyist and he admits that he never wrote FOSS.

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

A Single Comment

  1. twitter said,

    April 19, 2011 at 8:49 am

    Gravatar

    Florian’s disgraceful defense of Microsoft patent deals is detailed here.

    I tried to post this in Linux Today but the page formatting and advertisements were too obnoxious for Akregator.

What Else is New


  1. Web Site of French Senator Richard Yung Cracked Just Days After Criticising the EPO

    A French politician finds himself red-faced after criticising the EPO, as his site gets flagged as malicious, gets blocked, and his blog post (speech) about the EPO vanishes



  2. New Survey Shows That Even Patent Professionals Know That Team UPC is Lying About Unitary Patent Roadmaps

    The "Unified Patent Court (UPC) is unlikely to become operational by December 2017 [according to] nearly three-quarters of WIPR readers," but Team UPC continues to spread lies



  3. Does the EPO Want Patent Quality to Decline Against the USPTO and Become Akin to SIPO?

    The EPO, which is trying to convert a patent system into a cash cow rather than a public service, risks losing public support and an applicants base (where it hasn't lost it already)



  4. Xinova is a Patent Troll With Connections to Microsoft and Intellectual Ventures, the World's Largest Troll

    A Microsoft patent troll gives birth to another trollish tentacle (one among literally thousands), this one called "Xinova" but formerly known as Invention Development Fund (IDF)



  5. IAM 'Magazine' Rented Out to Microsoft Again, in Order to Attack Amazon (as Host of Free/Libre Software) Using Software Patents FUD

    The new front against GNU/Linux, or the attempt by Microsoft to tax the platform using software patents, is glossed over in puff pieces from Microsoft, conveniently published under IAM's own umbrella again



  6. Links 27/2/2017: GNU Linux-libre 4.10, Weston 2.0.0, Git 2.12.0, Linux From Scratch 8.0

    Links for the day



  7. Top Officials in French Government Are Growing Tired of Battistelli's Abuses at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    An automated translation of a recent debate about the EPO in the French government, culminating in intervention by Richard Yung



  8. A US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Which is Hostile Towards Patent Maximalists May Closely Examine More Patents That Apple Uses Against Android

    A company which often takes pride in designers rather than developers (art, not technical merit) may lose that leverage over the competition if its questionable patents are taken away by the Supremes



  9. As Long as Software Patents Are Granted and Microsoft Equips Trolls With Them, “Azure IP Advantage” is an Attack on Free/Libre Software

    Microsoft is feeding enemies of GNU/Linux and Free/libre Open Source software (FLOSS) in order to sell its 'protection', which it names "IP Advantage" in a rather Orwellian fashion (same naming as back in the Novell days)



  10. Patent Trolls on Their Way Out in the United States and Their Way Into China, No Thanks to the Open Invention Network (OIN)

    An update on patent trolls and the role played by supposed allies of Free/libre software, who in practice do everything to exacerbate the problem rather than resolve it



  11. Insensitivity at the EPO’s Management – Part VIII: When Governed by Criminals, Truth-Tellers Are Cast as Criminals and Criminals as Justice Deliverers

    The bizarre state of affairs at the European Patent Office, where being an honest and transparent person makes one incredibly vulnerable and subjected to constant harassment from the management



  12. The Sickness of the EPO – Part V: Shedding Light on Institutional Abuse Against Ill and/or Disabled Individuals

    The seriousness of the situation at the EPO and a call for action, which requires greater transparency, even if imposed transparency



  13. The EPO's Race to the Bottom in Recruitment and Early Retirements Explained by an Insider

    The European Patent Office under Battistelli is failing to attract -- and certainly failing to retain -- talented examiners



  14. Wouter Pors and Other UPC Boosters Believe That Repeating the Lies Will Potentially Make Them Truths

    The lobbying campaign for UPC, or hopeful lies (sometimes mere rumours) disguised as "news", continues to rely on false perceptions that the UPC is just a matter of time and may actually materialise this year



  15. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) is Utilised in Fixing the US Patent System and the Patent Microcosm Loses Its Mind

    A roundup of PTAB news, ranging from attacks on the legitimacy of PTAB to progress which is made by PTAB, undoing decades of overpatenting



  16. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and the Federal Circuit (CAFC) Take on Patents Pertaining to Business Methods

    Patents on tasks that can be performed using pen and paper (so-called 'business methods', just like algorithms) and oughtn't be patent-eligible may be the next casualty of the America Invents Act (AIA)



  17. Google's Stewardship of GNU/Linux (Android, Chromebooks and More) in Doubt After Company Resorts to Patent 'First Strikes'

    Google has just turned a little more evil, by essentially using patents as a weapon against the competition (by no means a defensive move)



  18. Links 24/2/2017: Ubuntu 17.04 Beta, OpenBSD Foundation Nets $573,000 in Donations

    Links for the day



  19. IAM, Greased up by the EPO, Continues Lobbying by Shaming Tactics for the UPC, Under the Guise of 'News'

    The shrill and well-paid writers of IAM are still at it, promoting the Unitary Patent (UPC) at every opportunity and every turn



  20. Patent Scope Gone Awry: European Vegetable Patents Office?

    In its misguided race to raise so-called 'production', the EPO lost sight of its original goals and now facilitates patent royalty payments/taxation for naturally-recurring items of nature



  21. Yes, There is Definitely Brain Drain (Experience Deficit) at the European Patent Office and Stakeholders Feel It

    The direction that the European Patent Office has taken under Battistelli undoes many decades (almost half a century) of reputation-building and progress and naturally this repels existing staff, not to mention hampers recruitment efforts



  22. The Sickness of the EPO – Part IV: Cruel Management That Deliberately Attacks the Sick and the Weak

    The dysphoric reality at the European Patent Office, which is becoming like a large cell (with bolted-down windows) where people are controlled by fear and scapegoats are selected to perpetuate this atmosphere of terror and maintain demand (or workload) for the Investigative Stasi



  23. Links 23/2/2017: Qt 5.9 Alpha, First SHA1 Collision

    Links for the day



  24. UPC Roundup: War on the Appeal Boards, British Motion Against the UPC, Fröhlinger Recalled, and Fake News About Spain

    Taking stock of some of the latest attempts to shove the Unitary Patent (UPC) down Europe's throat, courtesy of Team Battistelli and Team UPC



  25. The Sickness of the EPO – Part III: Invalidity and Suicides

    An explanation of what drives a lot of EPO veterans to depression and sometimes even suicide



  26. The Appeal Board (PTAB) and Federal Circuit (CAFC) Maintain Good Pace of Patent Elimination Where Scope Was Exceeded

    The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) continues to accept about 4 out of 5 decisions of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) refuses to intervene



  27. Software Patents Are Ebbing Away, But the “Swamp” Fights Back and Hijacks the Word “Fix”

    The club of patent maximalists, or those who profit from excess prosecution and legal chaos, isn't liking what has happened in the United States and it wants everything reversed



  28. Report From Yesterday's Debate About the European Patent Office (EPO) at the Bavarian Landtag

    A report of the EPO debate which took place at the Bavarian Landtag yesterday (21/2/2017)



  29. Links 22/2/2017: Wine-Staging 2.2, Nautilus 3.24

    Links for the day



  30. French Politician Richard Yung Tells the Government About Abuses at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    The subject of EPO scandals has once again landed in French politics, just a couple of months since it last happened


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