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09.17.11

Deepwater Horizon Final Report Spares Microsoft

Posted in Site News at 6:41 pm by Guest Editorial Team

The official final report on the Deepwater Horizon drilling disaster overlooks or ignores crucial testimony about the role of non free software. They conclude:

The Panel found that a central cause of the blowout was failure of a cement barrier in the production casing string, a high‐strength steel pipe set in a well to ensure well integrity and to allow future production. The failure of the cement barrier allowed hydrocarbons to flow up the wellbore, through the riser and onto the rig, resulting in the blowout. The precise reasons for the failure of the production casing cement job are not known.

That’s fair enough and they go on to cite various management issues that lead up to this. What’s not so fair is that they ignore the meat of Mike William’s prior testimony when examining the actual accident.

hydrocarbons began to flow from the Macondo reservoir into the well. Despite a number of additional anomalies that should have signaled the existence of a kick or well flow, the crew failed to detect that the well was flowing until 9:42 p.m. By then it was too late – the well was blowing drilling mud up into the derrick and onto the rig floor. If members of the rig crew had detected the hydrocarbon influx earlier, they might have been able to take appropriate actions to control the well. There were several possible reasons why the Deepwater Horizon crew did not detect the kick.

None of the reasons given mention the fact that Windows NT blue screen failures and lack of redundancy left the drilling crew blind. Nor is that software mentioned when explaining alarm bypasses that delayed crew notification once the accident had happened. In fact, “Microsoft” and “Windows” are never mentioned in the 217 page report.

There is no excuse for this omission because it was widely reported by Techrights and others. Previously, Techrights reported the role of Microsoft in the failure of the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform. The first report was when the NYT and other sites quoted Mike Williams referring to BSoD. The second report was an exclusive and detailed analysis of Mike Williams later published testimony. How such a long and extensive technical investigation could ignore such obvious problems is a mystery.

On the Web, Microsoft is Dying, GNU/Linux and FOSS Are Winning

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Servers, Windows at 6:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Microsoft’s market share in servers is said to have slid to 1997 levels

FOLLOWING its malicious attack on Yahoo!, Microsoft became best evidence of its own demise on the Web. It no longer sought to create compelling products and make these available; instead, Microsoft tried to derail its competitors, preferably stealing their customers in the process. Once they got some crony installed, everything Yahoo! had which was of value to Microsoft got passed to Microsoft or put under the leadership of former Microsoft executives. According to this bit of news, Yahoo! is already well too infected by the Microsoft virus. “MALWARE DISTRIBUTORS have managed to get their rogue ads displayed on Bing and Yahoo when users search for popular software downloads,” says The Inquirer. “Since these ads always appear at the top of the page before the actual search results, and since the rogue websites they point to are near perfect copies of the real ones, the attack most likely has a high infection rate.”

This is why it’s good to limit Microsoft’s presence on the Web. It is nothing but trouble. In other interesting news, “Microsoft’s web server is losing ground” to the point where even Netcraft's flawed statistics show Microsoft approaching single-digit market share. To quote:

Apache has been the most widely used web server on the Internet since the early days of the Web. It still is. The second-most popular web server has been, and still is, Microsoft’s Internet Information Server, IIS. But Microsoft’s web server is now losing ground.
It wasn’t always like this. For quite some time, IIS was gaining ground on Apache, but the tide changed in 2007. Since then Apache has recovered much of its previous dominance, reaching a 65% market share, while the market share for IIS has dwindled below 16%, less than half of what it used to be. That’s a pretty steep drop, bringing the IIS market share back to what it was in 1997, 14 years ago.

In reality, based on the claims of some people, Microsoft’s real IIS market share was somewhere around 12%, whereas Apache and GNU/Linux market share in this area were all along impressive. In September 2008 Steve Ballmer was quoted as saying that “[f]orty percent of servers run Windows,” but he probably used flawed measures/methods. He would only wish for such a high market share. Where servers are concerned, Microsoft may be making money, but it’s not making much an impact. Zero-cost operating systems work a lot better and the Microsoft-taxed distribution, SUSE, is still niche product (for Microsoft lovers such as SAP).

Novel party

GTK 3-Sharp and Gstreamer-Sharp

Posted in Microsoft, Mono, Novell at 5:32 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: What Mono proponents are other closet Windows/.NET fans are up tp

A few hours ago Ryan asked, “did you see omgubuntu give Windows 8 a glowing review?”

He also showed Mono promotion (in the form of Banshee news) which ignores the known risks and development impediments. He claims that “they want to make a GTK 3-Sharp and a Gstreamer-Sharp,” later adding that “Rhythmbox isn’t exactly getting a lot of love lately.”

“I think it’s only on life support because Fedora doesn’t want to use Banshee,” he added. When will Canonical get off the Mono dependency? It’s the gateway drug to Microsoft.

We ought to mention that one of the Mono boosters who attacked this site for a long time (trolling the IRC channel, smearing it from afar, etc.) turned out to have been a Microsoft intern. He pretended to be a Ubuntu member. Funny how many Mono people are close to Microsoft but still in disguise, eh?

Impact of America Invents Act on Patent Trolls

Posted in Law, Patents, Red Hat at 5:18 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The Capitol

Summary: A Red Hat perspective on the recently-passed H.R. 1249

RED HAT was recently sued by MOSAID, a patent troll that Microsoft helped pass some patents to, by its very own admission. MOSAID is similar to Acacia, which also sued Red Hat.

According to Erick Robinson, whom we mentioned in March and in April, the lousy patent 'reform' we saw recently may in fact be helpful against patent trolls. To quote Red Hat’s OpenSource.com:

So it has finally happened: a patent reform bill has actually become law. Last Thursday, the U.S. Senate voted 89-9 to send H.R. 1249 to the White House, where it was signed into law today. While I have pointed out in the past that this bill misses out on several aspects of reform that previous bills attempted, it does include some useful aspects.

First, though, let’s discuss what the new law will NOT include. It will not include any provision tying damages in patent litigation to the specific contribution of the patent over prior technology nor will it provide any specific damages limitation. It will also not require bifurcated trials to separate liability and damages issues. It will not allow interlocutory (real-time, during the underlying case rather than post-verdict) appeal of claim constructions by courts. It will also not specifically include a provision restricting venue in patent litigation (but, as shown below, the joinder provision will have an effect on venue for some cases). Each of these provisions were included in prior versions of the legislation and would have helped fix the system.

[...]

The joinder provision included in the America Invents Act, as passed, which Red Hat actively supported, specifically states that there must be another basis for joinder beyond an allegation that the defendants have all infringed a patent. Thus, the new law should prevent the “file around the country, and add a few Texas mom and pops” tactic. In fact, the natural result of this new law should be that patent plaintiffs, especially non-practicing entities (NPEs), will generally have to file as many lawsuits as there are defendants. This will mean that each case will likely be filed either where each defendant is organized (often Delaware or Nevada) or where it has its principal place of business.

At least as important as this effective restriction on venue is the effect on NPEs of having to litigate one case per defendant. First, NPEs have been targeting multiple defendants in a single lawsuit to reduce their costs. More important, though, NPEs have been leveraging such lawsuits against defendants by forcing competitors and other unfriendly parties to either cooperate by sharing confidential documents, expenses, attorneys, and strategy or to spend even more money and resources in defending the case. The new “one defendant-one lawsuit” rule will require NPEs to try cases as many times as there are defendants. Not only is this prohibitively expensive, but it puts the validity of the patent(s) in suit in peril every time the case is tried.

Ultimately, however, patent trolls should not exist; neither should software patents.

Cablegate: EU Negotiations About EU Patent/Community Patent

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, Intellectual Monopoly, Patents at 5:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: 3 cables from Brussels and Geneva, all demonstrating growing acceptance of artificial trans-Atlantic monopolies with similar trends within Europe itself

According to EU authorities, there is no reason to worry about expanding the scope of patents, opening the door to increased litigation and damages.

In the following 3 cables we see the subject brought up several times. In the second cable, “Lorrain added that patent harmonization would be interesting, along with a discussion on copyrights and other current IPR issues.”

The third cable says: “A key area that would further innovation in the seed industry would be patent harmonization of plant protection, as the existing rules under the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) allow for protection of plant varieties either by patents or by an effective sui generis system or by any combination thereof. As a result, there are varying degrees of patent protection for plants from one territory to another. ”

We wrote about TRIPS in [1, 2, 3, 4]. The three cables from 2008 and 2009 are as follows:

Read the rest of this entry »

Cablegate: Sarkozy Promotes Monopolies in China, French Government Backs ‘Community Patent’ (aka EU Patent, Harmonisation)

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, Intellectual Monopoly, Patents at 4:44 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: The position of the Nicolas Sarkozy regime on intellectual monopolies including patents

POOR CHINA. The West is too obsessed with (afraid of) this highly productive nation that exports almost everything people buy in the shops if it’s economic to transport by ship. Japan et al. try to limit China's trade using intellectual monopolies, which can impede domestic production under independent brands (Apple, for instance, is notorious for shutting down competing factories in China under the pretext of “IPR”). In any event, according to the following Cablegate cable (under ¶4), the Nicolas Sarkozy regime “recently ratified the London protocol and would support adoption of a Community patent during its presidency, he said. “Common reflection” on patent harmonization issues was a potential area for TEC discussion. France also was supportive of the International Anti-counterfeiting and Piracy Agreement (?) (ACTA).”

The information came from Novelli, who “had accompanied President Sarkozy to China in late 2007 and the message on IPR had been “very firm.” Pushing together for a stronger Chinese approach on IPR was important.” Important to who? Surely not the Chinese population.

The position from Paris and EU authorities matters a lot and the cable below is not so out of date. It’s also about ACTA.


VZCZCXYZ7332
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHFR #0386/01 0641756
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 041756Z MAR 08
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2152
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS PARIS 000386 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT PASS USTR 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ECON [Economic Conditions], ETRD [Foreign Trade], 
ENRG [Energy and Power], PREL [External Political Relations],
EAGR [Agriculture and Forestry], EUR, FR [France; Corsica] 
SUBJECT: FRENCH RECEPTIVE TO A/S SULLIVAN'S PITCH ON TEC 
 
REF: 2/11 PARIS POINT ON FRENCH GMO LAW 
 
¶1. (U) Embassy Action Request Para 14. 
 
¶2. (SBU) Summary:  In February 13-14 meetings French Trade 
Minister Novelli, MFA Economic Director Masset and PM 
Diplomatic Advisor Lapouge told A/S Dan Sullivan they would 
be supportive of the Trans-Atlantic Economic Council (TEC) 
as an important part of France's EU presidency.  On other 
issues Novelli said France would pay attention to 
"reciprocity" in EU foreign economic relations during its 
presidency.  France's position on agricultural bio- 
technology was evolving, with the amended draft law on GMOs 
recently approved by the French Senate a more "balanced" 
approach than that of the initial draft.  Lapouge said 
energy supply issues would figure among France's EU 
presidency priorities and briefed on PM Fillon's early 
February trip to Kazakhstan.  End summary. 
 
Novelli on TEC, 100% Screening, IPR 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶3. (SBU) In a February 13 meeting A/S Sullivan, accompanied 
by Ambassador Stapleton and SE Boyden Gray, told French 
Trade Junior Minister Herve Novelli the U.S. hoped France 
would put the TEC high on its agenda for the French EU 
presidency.  He underscored that the TEC not only could 
help deepen transatlantic economic relationship by reducing 
and harmonizing regulatory barriers, but also it has a much 
broader strategic rationale:  enabling the U.S. and EU to 
more closely coordinate economic policies vis-`-vis rising 
economic powers.  France's endorsement would be key to a 
successful TEC, and one that helped ensure the 
institution's longevity.  Novelli said the GOF saw the TEC 
as "very important" and the French presidency could "play a 
key role" in advancing it.  But the May TEC and June U.S.- 
EU Summit would precede the French presidency and it would 
be important to focus on these first. 
 
¶4. (SBU) Novelli described cargo security and IPR as GOF 
priorities (both in and out of the TEC).  U.S. requirements 
for 100% screening of containers were a top French concern 
given the "costs it would impose" on trans-Atlantic trade. 
Novelli saw convergence in U.S. - French interests on IPR. 
France recently ratified the London protocol and would 
support adoption of a Community patent during its 
presidency, he said. "Common reflection" on patent 
harmonization issues was a potential area for TEC 
discussion.  France also was supportive of the 
International Anti-counterfeiting and Piracy Agreement (?) 
(ACTA).  Novelli had accompanied President Sarkozy to China 
in late 2007 and the message on IPR had been "very firm." 
Pushing together for a stronger Chinese approach on IPR was 
important. 
 
Environmental Issues 
- - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶5. (SBU) In the wake of its late 2007 "Grenelle" 
environmental pact France would be "exemplary" on cutting 
carbon emissions.  The GOF was considering a variety of 
eco-taxes (and had already implemented some) as part of 
this effort.  It would use its EU presidency to encourage 
an "awakening" on the use of such measures among its EU 
partners.  Cuts in CO2 emissions were inevitable, Novelli 
said, the key would be to do so without impacting French 
productivity. (Note: Novelli said nothing about France's 
proposal for a carbon tax on imports from countries that do 
not impose binding limits on CO2 emissions. End note) 
A/S Sullivan underscored U.S. - EU convergence on climate 
change, especially through the Major Economies process. 
 
¶6. (SBU) Sullivan raised the issue of GMOs, and Novelli 
said the GOF's position was evolving.  The French Senate 
had passed a "more balanced" amended version of the GMO law 
than the one presented to parliament (ref).  The position 
of Minister of Ecology and Sustainable Development Borloo 
was shifting, Novelli claimed, "in spite the views of 
environmental groups."  France's current ban on MON810 
"could be lifted," he said, though he did not specify the 
timing or circumstances of a possible rescission. 
 
Reciprocity 
- - - - - - 
 
¶7. (SBU) Novelli previewed other priority issues within his 
remit for the French presidency.  The GOF would pursue a 
European Small Business Act, to include regulatory 
simplification and access to public procurement.  The GOF 
had presented its ideas in Brussels to "enrich the debate" 
and the Commission was preparing an initial draft.  The GOF 
would encourage movement towards freer trade and investment 
regimes, but on the basis of reciprocity.  The GOF wanted 
Europe to be "as open as our partners," but it would demand 
a level playing field.  Discussion on EU trade defense 
measures was a possible "element" in France's strategy for 
pursuing reciprocity. 
 
¶8. (SBU) France continued to hope for a Doha deal, Novelli 
said, but it "must be balanced."  The GOF felt the 
Commission had done the "maximum," in fact surpassing 
negotiating mandates on agriculture and industrial access. 
France would not "sacrifice its interests" for the sake of 
a deal.  Sullivan underscored very strong U.S. commitment 
to getting a "good, ambitious" agreement.  He also noted 
the importance of maintaining a public commitment to open 
trade and investment, saying that foreign direct investment 
was a net benefit regardless of reciprocal limitations that 
partners might impose. 
 
TEC Strategic Dialogue Timely 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶9. (SBU) In a separate meeting MFA Economic Director 
Christian Masset echoed Novelli's support for the TEC.  He 
warmed to A/S Sullivan's description of the strategic 
nature of the TEC as demonstrated by the dialogue that had 
occurred over lunch at the November meeting.  Such dialogue 
could be particularly useful given that France would host 
EU summits with a number of key developing economies during 
its presidency, including China and India. 
 
¶10. (SBU) Masset expanded on the French EU presidency 
priorities of climate change and energy.  The GOF would 
look to move forward with Phase II of the Emissions Trading 
System, the framework directive on renewables, and a 
directive for carbon capture and storage.  To reach 2020 
reduction goals, half of the gains would come through the 
functioning of the ETS, the other half from sectors not 
covered by the trading system.  It would take strong action 
in both areas to achieve EU goals. 
 
¶11. (SBU) On energy security, France would "put more 
emphasis" on dialogue with the Central Asia/Caspian region 
on diversification.  Masset was keen on A/S Sullivan's 
views on the region, and Sullivan highlighted elements of 
his latest trip to Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Turkmenistan. 
Masset and Sullivan also touched on eventual membership of 
India and China in the IEA (septel). 
 
PM Fillon in Kazakhstan 
- -  - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶12. (SBU) PM Fillon's diplomatic advisor Jacques Lapouge 
briefed Sullivan on the Prime Minister's early February 
visit to Kazakhstan (the first such visit in 15 years). 
Calling the trip "pretty encouraging," Lapouge said Fillon 
brought a message of support for development of westward 
hydrocarbon supply routes.  Supply diversification would, 
in fact, be a theme of the French EU presidency.  Lapouge 
said Nazarbayev talked to Fillon about shipping product 
across the Caspian, as well as a possible pipeline skirting 
the southern shore of the Caspian.  He expressed continued 
interest in a pipeline to Iran. 
 
¶13. (SBU) On other issues, Lapouge responded positively to 
A/S Sullivan's briefing on TEC (though an advisor had heard 
disappointment at EU technical levels over a perceived lack 
of progress on EU issues at the first TEC).  On G8, the 
former Sous-Sherpa questioned whether there was sufficient 
follow-through in meeting commitments, notably on ODA.  The 
body's "credibility is at stake," Lapouge thought.  On IPR, 
the Heilegendamm Process must aim high and not be pulled 
down to the lowest common denominator.  Lapouge indicated 
the French were interested in keeping alive their proposal 
for a FATF-like body for IPR in G8 discussions. 
 
Embassy Action Request 
- - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶14. (SBU) French views on energy supply diversification 
opportunities in the Caspian Basin are evolving.  With the 
GOF ready to engage more actively on energy diplomacy in 
the region during its EU presidency, this is an auspicious 
time to contribute to French thinking.  Post encourages the 
visit of an appropriate Department, or inter-agency, 
delegation to Paris in the coming months for in-depth 
discussions with French counterparts on these issues. 
 
¶15. (U) A/S Sullivan has cleared this cable. 
 
ROSENBLATT

In the next post we shall look at cables from Brussels.

Cablegate: In 2010, Patent Harmonisation “Not Welcomed by Developing Countries”

Posted in Africa, America, Asia, Cablegate, Law, Patents at 4:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: How US diplomats view negotiations whose goal is to legitimise monopolies in countries that have no interest in these

According to the following year-old cable, specifically in ¶5, “Member States negotiated informally a compromise work program that ensured balanced and focused work for the SCP [Standing Committee on the Law of Patents]. The proposed work program included: 1. further study on technology transfer concerning the relationship of patent technology transfer and innovation; 2. work on limitations and exceptions that included the external expert study and Brazil’s work program proposal; 3. patent administration issues that included work on patent quality management and further work on dissemination of patent information that looked at digitization issues and access to complete patent information; 4. further work on client-attorney privilege to solicit Member State input on national experiences; 5. future conference on public health and food security issues; and 6. reaffirming that the non-exhaustive list of issues for possible discussion by the SCP remain open for further elaboration at the next meeting, but agreeing that Member States would refrain from adding on to the list at this session, so as to ensure that work on the existing studies could be more focused. These items were truly a compromise text, particularly for Group B, as our primary objective to discuss patent harmonization issues was not part of this list and many of the items had more of a developing country interest/slant. On day one of our conversation concerning future work, we reached agreement among Group B countries, GRULAC, Eastern European countries, Singapore, Korea, the regional coordinator of Africa, Angola.”

They are trying to convince developing countries to give up and accept a system which harms them greatly. With our emphasis on the relevant parts, ¶7 carries on by noting that “While Group B and the U.S. were disappointed that the agreement reached the day before did not satisfy all of the Africa Group and the Asia Group, we were willing to negotiate further from our compromise text. However, it became clear that the Africa Group and some Asian Group countries were not willing to move from their position. Group B in particular was willing to add on to the non exhaustive list with the inclusion of “work sharing” and the “strategic use of IP in business” as proposed by the Group of Eastern European Countries. Despite developing countries’ insistence that the non exhaustive list remain open, Indonesia and India opposed the Group B suggestion of “work sharing”, arguing that it was duplicative of work at the PCT working group and that it was patent harmonization-related and therefore not welcomed by developing countries. Further, even though Group B reminded these countries that their proposed suggestions on the list were duplicative of work occurring in the Committee on Development and IP (CDIP), Egypt’s response was that development agenda work in CDIP was a cross-cutting issue throughout the Organization, and therefore duplication was needed.”

Here is the cable in full:


VZCZCXYZ0005
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHGV #0136/01 0491710
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 181701Z FEB 10
FM USMISSION GENEVA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0238
INFO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA
RUEHGV/USMISSION USTR GENEVA

UNCLAS GENEVA 000136 
 
SIPDIS 
STATE FOR EEB/IPC, IO/HS, OES 
COMMERCE FOR USPTO 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ECON [Economic Conditions], 
KIPR [Intellectual Property Rights], 
WIPO [World Intellectual Property Organization] 
SUBJECT: Fourteenth Session of the WIPO Standing Committee on the Law 
of Patents 
 
¶1. The World Intellectual Property Organization's Standing 
Committee on the Law of Patents (WIPO SCP) continued to discuss 
preliminary studies requested by the SCP in June 2008 and March 
2009, and commenced a discussion on Brazil's proposal concerning 
exceptions and limitations to patent rights.  However, an impasse 
resulted at the SCP on the future work of the committee.  As a 
result, the agenda from this session will be used for the next 
meeting in October 2010.  During two days worth of negotiations on 
the future work topic, it became clear that Member States fail to 
see eye to eye on the international patent system itself, as some 
view the system to be a threat to development and oppose any global 
efforts - whether normative or cooperative technical assistance 
work -- in improving the patent system.  END SUMMARY. 
 
¶2. The WIPO SCP met from January 25-29, 2010.  Delegations from 103 
countries, 10 international organizations and 28 non-governmental 
organizations participated in the Committee which was chaired by 
Mr. Maximiliano Santa Cruz from Chile.  The United States 
delegation was represented by USPTO External Affairs Administrator 
Arti Rai, Charles Eloshway of USPTO, Janet Speck, Deputy Director, 
State Department and Deborah Lashley-Johnson, IP Attach???? at the 
U.S. Mission to the UN. 
 
¶3. Discussions were based on preliminary studies written by the 
International Bureau at WIPO concerning the relationship of 
standards and patents, client-attorney privilege, dissemination of 
patent information, transfer of technology, and opposition systems. 
Many delegations stated that these documents constituted a good 
basis for discussions, and requested further clarifications on 
various issues contained in the documents.  However, certain 
statements made by developing countries and NGO were worrisome, 
such as: equating work on the client-attorney disclosure problem to 
patent law harmonization work; viewing the topic of dissemination 
of patent information to include the disclosure of proprietary 
information and trade secrets; and stating that a study should 
include how the patent system hinders technology transfer. 
 
¶4. The topic of limitations and exceptions was also discussed, 
although the external experts' study was not available for this 
meeting.  A proposal in respect of exceptions and limitations to 
patent rights was submitted by the Delegation of Brazil, which 
received support by many developing countries.  The proposal has 
three phases:  discussion on national experiences on patent right 
exceptions and limitations; focus work on exceptions and 
limitations that help to address developmental concerns; and the 
development of an exceptions and limitations manual.  Other 
delegations, such as the U.S., Switzerland and other industrialized 
countries expressed concern that they had not received the document 
in advance of the meeting, and therefore had insufficient time to 
consider the proposal, and expressed a wish to consider the 
proposal at the following session in October 2010 when the external 
expert study would also be presented.  Nonetheless, the U.S. noted 
that it was interested in studying the issue more and saw strong 
intellectual property rights and enforcement to be consistent with 
proper, basic limitations and exceptions. 
 
¶5.  Gridlock, however, occurred once the committee moved onto the 
topic of future work.  Several regional coordinators and interested 
Member States negotiated informally a compromise work program that 
ensured balanced and focused work for the SCP.  The proposed work 
program included:  1. further study on technology transfer 
concerning the relationship of patent technology transfer and 
innovation; 2. work on limitations and exceptions that included the 
external expert study and Brazil's work program proposal; 3. patent 
administration issues that included work on patent quality 
management and further work on dissemination of patent information 
that looked at digitization issues and access to complete patent 
information; 4. further work on client-attorney privilege to 
solicit Member State input on national experiences; 5. future 
conference on public health and food security issues; and 6. 
reaffirming that the non-exhaustive list of issues for possible 
discussion by the SCP remain open for further elaboration at the 
next meeting, but agreeing that Member States would refrain from 
adding on to the list at this session, so as to ensure that work on 
the existing studies could be more focused.  These items were truly 
a compromise text, particularly for Group B, as our primary 
objective to discuss patent harmonization issues was not part of 
this list and many of the items had more of a developing country 
interest/slant.  On day one of our conversation concerning future 
work, we reached agreement among Group B countries, GRULAC, Eastern 
European countries, Singapore, Korea, the regional coordinator of 
Africa, Angola. 
 
¶6.  However, on day two, Angola, members of the Africa Group, such 
as Egypt and South Africa, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, 
 
 
Yemen, Iran and Indonesia, opposed the compromise text.  Their 
amendments suggested future studies on the negative impacts patents 
have on technology transfer and standards, and a new study on 
patents and public health.  There was also a proposal on the 
establishment of a technology transfer commission to focus on the 
problems of technology transfer.  Their proposal further lacked 
balance in their deletion of the only two issues offered by Group B 
in the initial compromise proposal concerning patent quality 
management and further work on client-attorney privilege.  The 
counter-proposal also included another large conference on patents 
and public policy issues as a follow up to the one held in July 
2009.  Lastly, they pushed to expand the non-exhaustive list to 
include topics such as the impact of the patent system on 
developing countries and LDCs, and the relationship of patents and 
food security. 
 
¶7. While Group B and the U.S. were disappointed that the agreement 
reached the day before did not satisfy all of the Africa Group and 
the Asia Group, we were willing to negotiate further from our 
compromise text.  However, it became clear that the Africa Group 
and some Asian Group countries were not willing to move from their 
position.  Group B in particular was willing to add on to the non 
exhaustive list with the inclusion of "work sharing" and the 
"strategic use of IP in business" as proposed by the Group of 
Eastern European Countries.  Despite developing countries' 
insistence that the non exhaustive list remain open, Indonesia and 
India opposed the Group B suggestion of "work sharing", arguing 
that it was duplicative of work at the PCT working group and that 
it was patent harmonization-related and therefore not welcomed by 
developing countries.  Further, even though Group B reminded these 
countries that their proposed suggestions on the list were 
duplicative of work occurring in the Committee on Development and 
IP (CDIP), Egypt's response was that development agenda work in 
CDIP was a cross-cutting issue throughout the Organization, and 
therefore duplication was needed. 
 
¶8. COMMENT: Group B member states expressed deep concern about the 
events that transpired at this meeting.  Several countries refused 
to negotiate from their maximalist positions, which has been a 
concern in other committees at WIPO.  The inflexibility of 
developing country positions will make reaching a compromise on any 
SCP work program impossible, particularly when this committee has 
had a history of disbanding for three years due to similar 
political impasses.  Further, it is clear that the development 
agenda is the only work these delegations are interested in at the 
expense of issues related to patent law that are important to Group 
B and their constituents.   Targeted demarches to the few countries 
that are blocking progress and preventing the SCP to function are 
being considered.  In addition, Group B will increase its 
coordination to advance its agenda on the various issues before the 
SCP, such as in the areas of technology transfer, limitation and 
exceptions, client-attorney privilege, opposition systems, and 
dissemination of patent information. END COMMENT. 
GRIFFITHS

Next, we are going to look at some EU positions on the subject.

Cablegate: USPTO, JPO, and EPO Prepare a Global Patent System

Posted in America, Asia, Europe, Patents at 4:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: Letters from Japan herald an era of patent colonialism, or at least this ambition

SEVERAL days ago we wrote about the Trilateral Patent Offices in relation to the Global Patent System (set up by authorities of only the richest 10% of the world’s population). That would be the sort of system which mostly inherits its principles from the world’s elite, putting in jeopardy all those without a monopoly.

According to the following cable that we found, “At the annual Trilateral Meeting of the U.S. Patent Office (USPTO), the Japan Patent Office (JPO) and European Patent Office (EPO) in Tokyo on November 16, the three agencies announced several small but significant initiatives that will save time and money for patent applicants, including agreeing to standardize the format for patent applications among all three offices starting in 2007 and electronic exchange of some of the documents needed to file in a second or third patent office.”

They are preparing to have a global system. Right now they just try to centralise everything in Europe and recently the USPTO started sharing information with the EPO. The EPO’s Web site bragged about it only days ago. To quote further from this cable: “The three Patent offices agreed to conduct a comparative study on examination practices, an important step towards the goal of harmonization of patent examinations.

“They recognized the strategic importance of access to Chinese patent documentation and the three agencies agreed to urgently consider how make this access efficient and easy.

“The USPTO and JPO are able to move more quickly than the EPO can, and the two offices are actively working towards the mechanisms that will permit mutual recognition of patent examinations.

“USPTO experts, however, said privately that the Japanese press has consistently misrepresented the U.S. position by wrongly reporting that the USPTO has already agreed to shift from a first to invent to first to file system.

Put that together with the recent ‘reform’ and imagine their vision of imposing patent regime on everyone everywhere.

The cable comes from Japan, which is trying to tame China with patents to assure artificial scarcity.

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