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


Patents Roundup: Microsoft Front the BSA Promotes Software Patents, Kappos Helps the Rotten System

Posted in Patents at 4:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: A lot of evidence which shows who USPTO really serves and at whose expense

THE head of the cartel‘s office, the USPTO, has been defending a practice which decades ago the SCOTUS deemed unacceptable. He got flak for rather insensitive remarks:

Patents on software are “every bit as well deserved” as patents on air flight, the electric bulb, and innovations that enabled the industrial revolution, Patent and Trademark Office Director David J. Kappos said in a Nov. 20 speech in Washington, D.C.

Aiming his remarks specifically at “those reporting and commenting on the smartphone system patent wars as if to suggest that the [patent] system is broken,” Kappos said, “let’s move beyond the flippant rhetoric and instead engage in thoughtful discussion.”

That is what we were all trying to have, but Wired is stacked by law professors rather than software professionals and this is no exception. The voice of practising professional is being taken away. In nanotechnology, we recently saw more professionals speaking out:

Software patents have long been contentious things, but patents in other areas of science are also becoming frequent subjects of editorials and court cases, with biotech and genomics making it to the US Supreme Court. Now, if an editorial in Nature is to be believed, nanotechnology is set to become the latest patent battleground.

Joshua Pearce is a professor at Michigan Technological University, and he very explicitly argues for taking an open-source and open-access approach to nanotechnology research. But he also goes well beyond that, calling for a patent moratorium and a gutting of the law that governs tech transfers from government-funded university research. At stake, he argues, is the growth of a field that could be generating trillions of dollars of economic activity within a few years.

So who is it that supports Kappos’ position? Lobbyists for large software companies, i.e. lawyers’ groups like the Business Software Alliance (BSA), as seen here, and patent lawyers. This is good for the cartel of patent stackers and bad for everyone else. Intel, which is part of this cartel and is a proponent of software patents, has just bought some more patents:

It’s been announced this morning that Intel is acquiring ZiiLabs, the subsidiary of Creative Labs that previously was 3DLabs. Intel is gaining “certain engineering resources and assets” plus licensing rights to certain ZiiLabs patents and other technologies surrounding the GPU.

Intel has been having problems recently (Android plays a role) and its head, who stood behind the company’s criminal behaviour, is said to have been sacked for it (not effective immediately). Maybe Intel is planning to tax some more those who do manage to actually sell a lot of chips. That’s where patents come in.

The USPTO is becoming a joke in more people’s eyes. Here is a look at patents on turkey (animal):

Here in Canada, we gave our proverbial thanks over a month ago, and since all the Americans at Techdirt have taken off for the weekend, I thought I’d take a moment to put together some advice on preparing a great Thanksgiving turkey—with a little help from the USPTO.

If you’re tired of the traditional roast, maybe it’s time to try a more creative preparation—just be careful you don’t run afoul of any patents. Here’s an idea: with some skilled knife-work, you can slice a turkey into pieces that resemble various cuts of steak—and that method will only be under patent for another five years!

Here is a corresponding response to Kappos. Now he is part of the problem, so his inane propaganda is being addressed:

Note the giant and very questionable assumptions in the middle of that one: that it’s “innovators” seeking to “protect” “breakthroughs.” I’d argue that none of the three things in quotes is accurate. Quite frequently it’s lawyers who haven’t actually innovated at all looking to shakedown actual innovators for broadly worded patents that never should have been granted, and which are being interpreted to cover things they don’t really have anything to do with. That’s not innovation. It’s extortion… backed up by the US government. It’s a travesty.

Even worse, Kappos is still relying on the absolutely ridiculous “study” that the USPTO put out earlier this year, despite the fact that its methodology has been widely debunked for including grocery store baggers as “IP innovators.” Sorry. And, if you look at what their actual report shows, it suggests that patent-intensive businesses aren’t doing so well. Somehow he ignores that. Of course, perhaps that’s why his office rejected a promised interview with me earlier this year, and could only defend the patent claims by arguing the most bizarre correlation argument in the world, that because Steve Jobs was innovative and had patents, therefore, patents worked.

Some lawyers’ Web sites obviously support Kappos. We know whose side he is on. More people need to speak about this bias in the whole system. It was subjected to a coup and the infiltrators won. As one pro-software patents site put it, Kappos revealed himself as part of this camp.

Last week, Director of the USPTO David Kappos delivered a keynote address to the Center for American Progress that focused on software patents and the smartphone “patent wars.” The speech is noteworthy for the Director’s strong defense of software patents.

Watch what Stallman had to cope with the other day:

The conference was a one-day conference, which started at 8:50 am and ended at 5:20 pm with a a reception afterwards from 5:30 to 6:30. There was a lunch break from 12:15 to 1. The schedule can be found at the conference website. It was adhered to closely.

The morning program consisted of three panels. The first was the Keynote and was titled “What is the Problem?” The second was “Panel #1: Legal Reform, Part 1.” Then after a coffee break we had “Panel #2: Agency Reform.”

The afternoon panels were called “Keynote #2: Views from the Trenches” and then “Panel #3: Legal Reform, Part 2.” After this an afternoon coffee break, then “Panel #4: Self Help” and at the end “Keynote #3.”

Some of you who were not in attendance were able to view the sessions live, except for the talk of Richard Stallman who refused to have his talk streamed on the ground that Silverlight used. Since I was actually present, I do not have the live streaming to look at, and thus my presentation of what happened is based upon my notes, which in what follows might be embellished by memory and thus not word-for-word correct.

This event too got stacked by lawyers, the leeches in this whole system. It is time to reclaim the patent system or just bury it. It’s for lawyers and plutocrats, not science and technology. Not anymore anyway.

Here is a technical person explaining why we should end software patenting. There is a good image inside this article showing how the cartel works and how it uses lawyers to keep challenges (to quality and also price) out of reach. To quote the introduction: “Patents make sense in some industries. When it costs a billion dollars to develop a new pharmaceutical, a company needs protection during that process to make it worth the risk of trying.

“But software doesn’t have that overhead. Too often, software patents just end up making the incumbents complacent and discourage brave, disruptive experiments.”

“This video by Marginal Revolution writer and economics professor Alex Tabarrok makes a clear argument against software patents.”

Mike Masnick expressed his views on why the USPTO is a lost cause for those of us who pursue reform from within:

While the US Patent Office has officially declared its desire to put its head in the sand concerning the problem of patent trolls, it appears that other parts of the government aren’t necessarily going to ignore the problem. The FTC and the DOJ are planning explore the issue with patent trolls at a public workshop next month (they use the currently popular term “patent assertion entities” rather than “patent trolls” but it’s clear what they mean). And the indications are that they may be looking to use their power to crackdown on bad behavior, potentially even using antitrust tools…

After the world’s largest patent troll got monopolies on three-dimensional printing we observe spurious lawsuits as covered by Masnick’s Web site:

We’ve been pointing out for a while that one of the reasons why advancements in 3D printing have been relatively slow is because of patents holding back the market. However, a bunch of key patents have started expiring, leading to new opportunities. One, in particular, that has received a fair bit of attention was the Formlabs 3D printer, which raised nearly $3 million on Kickstarter earlier this year. It got a ton of well-deserved attention for being one of the first “low end” (sub ~$3,000) 3D printers with very impressive quality levels.

This progress is not stopped by patents. So much for encouraging innovation…

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. Open Letter Exposing the Farce Which Was Battistelli's 'Social Conference' Coinciding With Further (New) Attacks on EPO Staff Representatives

    A detailed letter reveals legitimate concerns expressed by staff representatives at the EPO ahead of the so-called Social Conference, in which we have highlighted severe factual flaws

  2. Translation of Latest Rant From French MP Philip Cordery About Benoît Battistelli's Abuses at the EPO

    Philip Cordery crosses horns with Benoît Battistelli, who has become a source of embarrassment for France with his autocratic tendencies and misguided policies that rapidly ruin the European Patent Office (EPO)

  3. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Leaked Document Shows PwC's Dishonesty and Misrepresentation of EPO Staff

    An in-depth analysis (but not comprehensive, just preliminary) of the so-called 'study' from PwC, which basically did what it was paid for (pay to say)

  4. Links 22/10/2016: Deus Ex for GNU/Linux, Global DDoS (DNS)

    Links for the day

  5. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Survey Comparison Shows Serious Deterioration and Efforts by PwC to Disguise the Truth

    The latest output from PwC turns out to be even worse than initially thought, indicating that not only did it find a degradation in the EPO but also attempted to hide/obscure it

  6. EPO Teaser - The "Iberian Connection" - Some Photos of García-Escudero and His Royal/Government Connections

    A look at the undeniably close connections between Mr. García-Escudero and the most powerful people in Spain

  7. Disruption to Site's Service

    A technical note about why Techrights has not been publishing many articles recently

  8. Links 21/10/2016: MPV 0.21, Mad Max for GNU/Linux

    Links for the day

  9. EPO Caricature: Battistelli's High Five

    Another cartoon about the sad state of the EPO

  10. Battistelli Ruins Not Only the EPO But Also the Whole of Europe By Ushering in Software Patents That Patent Trolls Love So Much

    Battistelli's bad leadership at the EPO threatens to bring to Europe all the ills and menaces of the patent system in the United States

  11. EPO Spokesman Lies to IP Watch in Order to Save Face and Save the King (Battistelli)

    Rewriting history (revisionism) regarding Battistelli and what was demanded amidst abusive behaviour from him

  12. Unitary Patent (UPC) is Dead, But 'Managing IP' and Selfish Patent Law Firms Still Try to Resurrect It

    The latest attempts to shore up the Unitary (or Unified) Patent Court and who's behind it other than the usual suspects

  13. Links 20/10/2016: Linux 4.10 Preview, ONF and ON.Labs to Merge

    Links for the day

  14. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC 'Study': The Raw Outcome Shows Distortion of the Facts at the EPO's Notorious 'Social Conference'

    Results of the Staff Survey carried out by PwC, in order to provide some propaganda for Battistelli's expensive Social Conference

  15. Addendum: EPO's Alberto Casado Cerviño, WIPO's Francis Gurry, and EUIPO's Archambeau

    Photos taken as part of an IP event which took place in Riga (Latvia) in March 2015

  16. Worrisome Connections Between EPO VP2 Alberto Casado Cerviño and Patricia García-Escudero Márquez

    Exploring the potential conflicts of interests implicating the EPO's Boards of Appeal Committee

  17. Site's Infrastructure Under Attack and Upgrades Ahead of Major New Publications

    Protections for the Web site have been improved and capacity increased in order to avoid or at least prepare for another week of abusive/spam traffic

  18. Team Battistelli's Conspiracy Theory: SUEPO is Behind Everything, EPO Management is Trying to Tell the Media

    Attempts to blame SUEPO, the staff union of the EPO, even though SUEPO has nothing to do with articles that are critical of the EPO while many thousands of EPO employees are disgruntled

  19. Links 19/10/2016: Canonical Livepatch Service, Plasma Plans

    Links for the day

  20. The 'Sarah Sharps' of Microsoft: Not the Kind of Scandal the Media Cares Enough to Write About

    Another example of the large (industrial) scale of sexual discrimination at Microsoft -- a company that tries to advertise itself as diverse or tolerant and stigmatise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) as intolerant and/or not diverse

  21. EPO Caricature: EQE Questions

    The latest EPO cartoon, this time about European qualifying examination (EQE)

  22. The Long History or Seeds of Control by Fear and Punishment at the EPO

    The latest hogwash from Team Battistelli (Pinocchio), the latest instance of software patents promotion by EPO Principal Director, and an old (decade-old) nugget of information from the Forum for Principal Directors

  23. Subject of the European Patent Office's Abuses Raised in European Parliament by Ulrike Müller (ALDE)

    A local copy of a bunch of questions asked less than a month ago by Ulrike Müller at the European Parliament, regarding the unacceptable state of affairs at the European Patent Office (EPO)

  24. French Article About the EPO "Crisis"

    Le Monde, which covered EPO suicides and nervous breakdowns a year and a half ago, revisits the subject

  25. Battistelli Wants Us to Believe a Patent Office in a Freefall (EPO) is “Stronger and More Sustainable”

    Still in denial (or self-deluding for self indulgence), Battistelli writes about the EPO as though everything is rosy and people are happy

  26. Leaked Documents Shed More Light on What Happened to Alison Brimelow and How Battistelli Rose to Power

    How Battistelli's (almost) all-male (and all-white, mostly French) management came into being, not too long after Ms Alison Brimelow got elbowed out the Office

  27. Leaked: Outcomes of 149th Administrative Council's Meeting at the European Patent Organisation

    The raw details or a summary thereof, based on the above which serves to confirm what we wrote about several days ago, right after the quarterly meeting had ended

  28. Danish Press Coverage of the European Patent Office and the Problems Explored by Techrights

    Jesper Kongstad does virtually nothing to deny the arguments (or "accusations") and instead alludes to the style of the writings about him

  29. Links 18/10/2016: Release Candidate of Leap 42.2, Looking Ahead at GTK4

    Links for the day

  30. Links 17/10/2016: JS Foundation, Ubuntu 17.04 Named ‘Zesty Zapus’

    Links for the day


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


Recent Posts