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

05.20.13

Patent Policy Laundering in the European Union and New Zealand

Posted in Europe, Patents at 4:17 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Policy globalisation

Laundry in Paris
Doing laundry in Paris, by LWY

Summary: How the so-called ‘free’ trade agreements help spread patent policy which favours software patents

The subject of software patents in Europe returned to the headlines in light of the Unitary patent, which this new paper calls a matter of playing with fire. Basically, the EPO’s overreach may prove counter-productive, not just contradictory to law (the EPO already disregards the law). Here is the EPO promoting the Unitary patent and Unified Patent Court, which are basically mechanisms for overriding the legal mechanisms of over a dozen nations (the UK already prepares for this policy laundering). It’s micro-globalisation, or the first stage of a broader assimilation all around the globe.

“It’s micro-globalisation, or the first stage of a broader assimilation all around the globe.”Ante from the FFII writes about cross-Atlantic treaties that have a similar effect of policy laundering. He writes: “With the software patents directive the Commission told us it was only about computer implemented inventions, not about software patents. Looking at the text, we knew that was not true.”

It seems like patent system globalisation is taking place (as we covered here many times before), jeopardising laws that ban software patents quite explicitly. In NZ (c/f software patents in New Zealand), for instance, the TPPA is believed to have impact on software parents policy. From the introduction of this very detailed post: “But how come the TPPA is connected with intellectual property (IP) and copyright law? The fact is that free trade and investment agreements have almost nothing to do with trade as we understand it. Their rules are designed for, and indirectly by, the most influential corporations in the countries involved. And guess who dominates? Major American corporations ranging from the world’s biggest drug companies and banks to Hollywood comprise almost 600 cleared advisors that get to see the secret text and lobby for their interests. Getting their demands into trade agreements is part of a general move towards “forum shifting” and “policy laundering” which refer to moving debate away from places where there is at least some requirement for public input and transparency, such as elected parliaments. Librarians, artists, writers, Internet businesses, schools, universities, museums, scientists and Internet users in general are all concerned about what the IP provisions of the TPPA will do to New Zealand’s copyright law.”

Scroll down to the following part: “Extending Patents To Software

“Ante from the FFII writes about cross-Atlantic treaties that have a similar effect of policy laundering.”“Another major issue is software patents. In New Zealand software is currently patentable merely because the Patents Act 1953 predated the widespread existence of software, and therefore does not specifically exclude it. In 2010, following submissions from a large number of software developers during the review of the Patents Act, the Commerce Commission Select Committee, recommended unanimously to the then Minister of Commerce, Simon Power, that software be specifically excluded from patentability in the resulting updated Patents Act. He and his successors have publicly supported this recommendation. New Zealand software developers saw this as a huge victory for common sense and for the future of innovation in New Zealand. But despite multi-partisan government support, the Patent Bill with its software patent exclusion has not yet been passed into law. Although the Government has made assurances to the contrary, many in the software industry wonder if the delay in passing the Patents Bill into law is due to the IP chapter in the TPPA being incompatible with a software patent exclusion.

“It is worth noting that IP claims are infecting other “non-IP” chapters of the TPPA. In fact a lot of the public health concerns relate to pharmaceutical patents blocking access by generic companies to their products, thereby delaying their availability on the market.15 This is part of the plan for undermining Pharmac. It was interesting to hear intellectual property being invoked as the basis of the case for Phillip Morris’ challenge to the New Zealand and Australian governments about their proposals for plain packaging of cigarettes.16In a completely Orwellian turn of events/phrase it seems that even the most corrupt of businesses – in this case Big Tobacco – are able to claim some weird moral ground through claims of IP and copyright.””

So now we know that those ‘free’ trade agreements may actually be cross-continental bridges for patent policy.

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. Links 28/7/2014: New Linux RC, Plasma 5 Live in Kubuntu

    Links for the day



  2. Links 27/7/2014: KDE 4.14 Beta 3, KDE 4.14 Beta 3 Released

    Links for the day



  3. Apple and Microsoft Are Proprietary Software Companies and the Media Should Stop Openwashing Them

    New examples where proprietary software giants are characterised as FOSS-embracing and FOSS-friendly by gullible or dishonest 'journalists'



  4. Bloomberg's Microsoft Propaganda

    Bloomberg delivers 'damage control' and PR ahead of the layoffs announcement; Microsoft uses Nokia to hide it and Bloomberg helps Microsoft by radically modifying headlines



  5. Frequency of Browser Back Doors in Microsoft Windows is Doubling

    The vulnerabilities which Microsoft tells the NSA about (before these are patched) are significantly growing in terms of their numbers



  6. FUD Entities Entering the FOSS World

    Symantec enters the AllSeen Alliance and Sonatype is once again trying to claim great insecurity in FOSS due to software licensing



  7. Groklaw Back in the Wake of ODF in the UK?





  8. Links 26/7/2014: New Wine, Chromebooks Strong Sales

    Links for the day



  9. Links 25/7/2014: GOG With GNU/Linux, Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS

    Links for the day



  10. Links 24/7/2014: Oracle Linux 7; Fedora Delays

    Links for the day



  11. Valerie Strauss Explains Why Gates Foundation's Lobbying for 'Common Core' (Privatisation) is a Swindle That Makes Microsoft Richer

    Continued criticism of the Gates Foundation's lobbying and masquerading, with more journalists brave enough to highlight the corruption



  12. USPTO Officially Sets New Guidelines to Limit Scope of Software Patents in the United States

    Even patent lawyers finally acknowledge that the incentive to file software patent applications has been reduced, as the scope of patents on software has been noticeably narrowed and they are harder to acquire, let alone enforce in a courtroom



  13. UK Government Adopts OpenDocument Format (ODF) and Microsoft Already Attacks the Government Over It, Showing Absolutely No Commitment to Open Standards

    Only "Microsoft as the standard" is the 'standard' Microsoft is willing to accept, as its response to the Cabinet Office's judgment reveals



  14. Microsoft Layoffs of 2014

    Another quick look at Microsoft's horrible state of affairs and why it has virtually nothing to do with Nokia



  15. Links 22/7/2014: Linux 3.16 RC 6, New UberStudent

    Links for the day



  16. Links 20/7/2014: Jolla in India, Mega Censored in Italy

    Links for the day



  17. Longtime Mono Booster Joins Microsoft-linked Xamarin

    Jo Shields almost joins Microsoft, settling instead for its proxy, Xamarin



  18. Linux Foundation Welcomes Patent Aggressor Red Bend Software

    The Linux Foundation's AllSeen Alliance welcomes as a member a company that uses software patents to sue Free/Open Source software



  19. Matt Levy From Patent Progress (and CCIA) Does Not Really Want Patent Progress

    Matthew ('Matt') Levy moved into a foe of patent progress last year, but he still runs a site calls Patent Progress, in which he diverts all attention to patent trolls (as large corporations such as Microsoft like to do)



  20. Attacking FOSS by Ignoring/Overlooking Issues With Proprietary Software

    The biasing strategy which continues to be used to demonise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) along with some new examples



  21. Links 19/7/2014: CRUX 3.1 is Out, CyanogenMod Competes With Google Now

    Links for the day



  22. Microsoft's Massive Layoffs Go Far Beyond Nokia; Nokia's Android Phones Axed by Microsoft's Elop

    Microsoft's rapid demise and permanent exit from Nokia's last remaining Linux platform (after Microsoft had killed two more)



  23. Patents on Software Already Being Invalidated in Courts Owing to SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Patents

    The Federal Circuit Appeals Court has just "invalidated a software patent for being overly abstract," says a patents expert



  24. OpenSUSE 'Community' is Crumbling, AttachMSFT Killed SUSE's Potential (Except as Microsoft Tax)

    Not much too see in the land of SUSE and Attachmate, or formerly the company known as Novell



  25. Links 18/7/2014: Slackware Turns 21, Spotify Switches to Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  26. Links 16/7/2014: Manjaro 0.8.10 Third Update, SIA Migrates to Red Hat

    Links for the day



  27. Microsoft's Latest Round of Massive/Bulk/Large-scale Layoffs

    Microsoft boosters are preparing 'damage control' pieces ahead of massive layoffs at Microsoft



  28. Secrecy Allows British Government to be Manipulated by Microsoft for Spyware Behind Closed Doors

    Dependence on malicious software from NSA ally Microsoft is highly dependent, at least in Britain, on government secrecy and vain refusal to comply with Freedom of Information (FOI) requests



  29. Software Patent Applications Already Being Rejected in the US Owing to SCOTUS Ruling, Some Patent Lawyers Are Fuming

    Good news on the software patents front as the USPTO starts rejecting software patent applications, based on patent lawyers' words



  30. Links 15/7/2014: New Plasma, Google Announces Project Zero

    Links for the day


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