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

01.01.13

Groups of Lawyers Will Not Solve the Patent Problem

Posted in Patents at 2:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Quentin Massys painting
16th century painting of a civil law notary

Summary: Scientists, engineers, programmers, technologists etc. — not government bodies — will help the rest of the public abolish government-granted monopolies

The European Commission doesn't get FRAND, or maybe it pretends not to, or perhaps it was bribed or deceived by Apple and Microsoft lobbyists. Either way, this recent event proved some malice in today’s Commission, which also ushered in the unitary patent. Glyn Moody writes on the subject:

There was – of course – disagreement on the place of FRAND, since those in the open source world know that it has none if the object is to produce a level playing-field for all to compete on equally. And for that very reason those in the world of proprietary software want FRAND baked into standards since it excludes nearly all of the key open source licences and the projects using them. It’s the perfect solution for those who are afraid to compete fairly: skew the rules so that open source is excluded, and then claim victory when it doesn’t offer solutions.

Also worth noting in the above statement from the report is the claim that “the distinction between software and hardware is increasingly artificial”. I think if we decode this, what it means is that in the old world of hardware – for example, in telecommunications or codecs – FRAND standards were common, and that’s perfectly true. But in the world of software, the key modern forums for standards such as W3C or OASIS require RF, not FRAND. So this is a crude attempt to force old-fashioned hardware approaches on modern software, because once again the convenient result is that open source is excluded.

Indeed, given the manifestly greater success of the modern approach – as demonstrated by the unprecedented rate of growth of the Internet ecosystem compared to earlier technologies – the move to implementing hardware features in software is a strong argument for making older hardware standards RF instead of FRAND; that would allow them to enjoy the same kind of accelerated deployment the software world has experienced in the last two decades.

Thus there is no “dilemma” that needs resolving, and no need for stakeholder dialogue – another code term for “opportunity for wealthy US software companies to spend huge sums lobbying for what they want in the corridors of Brussels,” since “stakeholders” never seems to include groups representing the public interest, who were similarly excluded from the ACTA negotiations until they took to the streets across Europe.

Even Kroes lost her way when it comes to patents as she gave implicit consent to FRAND [1, 2, 3]. These career politicians are typically lawyers by trade, so the poor comprehension of scientists’ desire is not surprising. See what IBM’s Kappos says to provide ammo to a lawyers’ firm after he had joined the USPTO and later announced that he would leave amid public scolding [1, 2, 3]:

USPTO Director Discusses Software “Patent Wars” By: Sheldon Mak & Anderson http://www.eyeonip.net/David Kappos, the Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, recently addressed the socalled “patent wars” impacting the software industry. Although he acknowledged several concerns about patent quality, he also highlighted the importance of IP rights to the software industry. “Patent protection is every bit as well-deserved for software-implemented innovation as for the innovations that enabled man to fly, and before that for the innovations that enabled man to light the dark with electricity, and before that for the innovations that enabled the industrial revolution,” Kappos stated. However, he also acknowledged that patent protection must be “properly tailored in scope, so that programmers can write code and engineers can design devices without fear of unfounded accusations of infringement.” Kappos also debunked reports that the “patent wars” between companies like Samsung and Apple signal that the system is broken. He cited a USPTO study that found that in over 80 percent of the smartphone lawsuits, the courts have construed the software patents at issue as valid. He further noted that rejections in software patent applications taken to the USPTO appeals board are upheld at a slightly higher rate than for the office as a whole, and those few decisions appealed to the Federal Circuit are affirmed 95 percent of the time. Kappos also noted that the changes implemented under the America Invents Act should improve the quality of software patents. He specifically listed new procedures, such as post-grant opposition, inter partes review, and covered business method patents review. He also noted that additional changes are forthcoming as the USPTO completes the rollout of the AIA. “So to the commentators declaring the system is “broken” I say: give it a rest already, and give the AIA a chance to work. Give it a chance to even get started. But we’re not done. Not nearly,” Kappos stated.

We already shared some rebuttals to this. The conclusion we can reach is that too many government bodies are occupied by lawyers who represent corporations (not people) and it shows. Groups that are led by lawyers do not want to solve the problem from which they profit.

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. Alice Continues to Smash Software Patents So Patent Lawyers, Monopolists' Lobbyists Etc. Now Attack the Supreme Court for Doing This

    Corporate lobbyists and patent lawyers are trying to put Alice in the grave, for its impact on software patents is very profound and thus far almost unstoppable



  2. How to Salvage the EPO's Reputation: Create More Boards of Appeal in Europe and Abolish the Misguided UPC Fantasy

    A critical evaluation of what goes on at the European Patent Office (EPO), which is quickly descending down (and overall degrading) to the level of Chinese systems, along with the corruption, the abuses, and the low quality of patents



  3. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) Has Just Sided With Patent Trolls

    The notorious CAFC, which manifested software patents in the United States, has just given a gift to patent trolls that typically use software patents for extortion down in Texas



  4. Analyses of the Latest Data From Lex Machina About Patent Litigation Show Some Litigation Declines

    Professor Mark Lemley's Lex Machina highlights litigation trends by collecting and analysing data related to patents and pertaining to intellectual monopolies in general; now it shows litigation droughts



  5. India is Having Another Taste of the Dangers of Western Patents, Must Learn to Reject Software Patents in the Face of Great Pressure

    The growing software giant which is India continues to face cruel and aggressive lobbying from the West, enabling the West to control India by patents that should not exist in the first place



  6. Links 29/4/2016: GNOME 3.21.1, Fairphone

    Links for the day



  7. Microsoft Says It Will Continue to Extort Companies That Distribute Linux, Using Software Patents As Usual

    Microsoft's war on Linux, a war which is waged using software patents (for revenue and/or for coercion in bundling deals), is still going on in spite of all the PR tactics from Microsoft and its paid partners



  8. Australia Might be Next to Block Software Patents If Commission's Advice is Followed

    Australian advice against software patents, which can hopefully influence Australian politicians and put an end, once and for all, to all software patents in Australia



  9. [ES] ''Si la Forma de Pensar de la EPO fuese Seguida, Guantánamo Sería Posible en Suelo Alemán.”

    La EPO está todavía bajo fuego, pero mucho de ello pasa detrás de las cortinas y envuelve abogados y/o burócratas



  10. The European Copy-Paste Office (EPO)

    This morning's example (not the first) of how the EPO uses 'social' media



  11. Links 28/4/2016: Fedora 24, EE Goes Open Source

    Links for the day



  12. Amid Referendum “the New European Unitary Patent System is Likely to Collapse Before It Started”

    The Unitary Patent Court (UPC) vision seems like it may be just one month away from its gradual death, depending on British voices amongst other key factors



  13. USTR is Trying to Shame and Bully India Into Introducing Software Patents in India

    Lobbying body of the US (corporations-led) is trying its usual dirty tactics against India's sound policy which excludes software/algorithms from patent scope



  14. No, Visual Studio is NOT Open Source and Xamarin Openwashing is NOT News

    The latest example of Microsoft openwashing, courtesy of confidants of Microsoft and those who got bamboozled by them



  15. Latest Black Duck Puff Pieces a Good Example of Bad Journalism and How Not to Report

    Why the latest "Future of Open Source Survey" -- much like its predecessors -- isn't really a survey but just another churnalism opportunity for the Microsoft-connected Black Duck, which is a proprietary parasite inside the FOSS community



  16. If EPO “Form of Thinking Were to be Followed, Guantanamo on German Soil Would be Possible.”

    The EPO is still under fire, but a lot of it happens behind the scenes and involves lawyers and/or bureaucrats



  17. Links 28/4/2016: Tomb Raider for GNU/Linux, Proxmox VE 4.2

    Links for the day



  18. [ES] La Departura de la Readidad de la EPO Y Su Entrada en la Esféra Industrial China de Propaganda

    La deceptiva trampa del maximálism de patentes, donde se asume que artficialmente aumentando el número de patentes otorgadas traerá el resultado esperado



  19. [ES] Una Fársa de Sistema: ¿Cómo la SIPO, USPTO, y cada vez más la EPO se Convierten en Llenado de Patentes (No Se Requiere Propia Examinación)

    Una crítica al decline en la calidad de patentes en algunas de las más grandes oficinas de patentes del mundo, donde aspiración parece ser neo-liberal en el sentido económico



  20. [ES] Microsoft ‘Asalto con Todo’ Contra Android, Java, y GNU/Linux, Usando la Clásica E.E.E. Táctica de Nuevo

    Otro recordatorio de la realidad que Microsoft está muy activo en el frente E.E.E., not no sólo contra GNU/Linux pero también Android y Java



  21. [ES] Más Rumores y Llamadas Acerca de Prospectos de Microsoft Vaya a Comprar Canonical (Ubuntu con todo y Zapatos)

    Teniendo en cuenta los últimos movimientos de Canonical, algunos expertos piensan que es posible que Shuttleworth elija el dinero a Microsoft sobre principios sino también inste para que esto ocurra



  22. Links 27/4/2016: A Lot About OpenStack, Vivaldi 1.1 Released

    Links for the day



  23. A Farce of a System: How SIPO, USPTO, and Increasingly the EPO Too Turn Into Filing Systems (No Proper Examination/Filtering Required)

    A critique of the declining quality of patents in some of the world's biggest patent offices, where the aspiration seems to be neo-liberal in the economic sense



  24. Microsoft's 'Full Assault' on Android, Java, and GNU/Linux, Using Classic E.E.E. Tactics Again

    Another reminder of the fact that Microsoft is very active on the E.E.E. front, not just against GNU/Linux but also Android and Java



  25. More Rumours and Calls Surrounding Prospects of Microsoft Buying Canonical (Ubuntu and More)

    Taking some of Canonical's recent moves into account, some pundits not only think it's possible for Shuttleworth to choose Microsoft money over principles but also urge for this to happen



  26. [ES] El Nuevo Impulso Finánciado por Microsoft Para Reforzar las Patentes de Software en los EE.UU., Apoyado por los Sospechosos Usuales (La Sagrada Familia) Mientras que Microsoft Cada Vez Más Lucha Como Compañíá Productiva

    Una mirada al esfuérzo de trae una resurgencia de las patentes de software en los Estados Unidos (con un clarísimo rol de Microsoft en él) y la fundación/conf ianza de Microsoften las patentes de software como arma contr Linux/Android porque las ganancias de Windows se están secando y el Windows Phone está al borde del colápso



  27. Links 26/4/2016: Firefox 46.0, Thunderbird's Stewardship

    Links for the day



  28. Links 25/4/2016: Kodi 16.1, OpenStack Summit

    Links for the day



  29. New Microsoft-Funded Push to Make Software Patents Stronger in the US, Backed by the Usual Suspects as Microsoft Increasingly Struggles as a Producing Company

    A look at the effort to bring about a software patents resurgence to the US (with clear Microsoft role in it) and Microsoft's reliance on software patents as a weapon against Linux/Android because Windows profits dry up and Windows Phone is on the verge of collapse



  30. Patents Roundup: Marijuana Patents, Patent Satellites, Patent Trolls, Wars, and Merchants (Notably Lawyers)

    Various strands of news about patents, focused on issues raised in the latter half of last week


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