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

04.05.14

SCOTUS Works For Plutocrats, But It May, For a Change, Axe Software Patents

Posted in Patents at 8:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

New gavel

Summary: Update on the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) case which can effectively end software patents where they originally came from

THE SCOTUS, like the USPTO, practically exists to serve corporations while claiming to serve people’s interests. We showed many examples of this over the years, especially when we closely covered patent matters.

SCOTUS has just proven, yet again, that it serves the interests of the top fraction of the top 1% of income earners — people who provide the majority of funding to political candidates [1,2]. Sen. Bernie Sanders says that SCOTUS undermines democracy by allowing billionaires to “buy elections”.

SOCTUS us losing the trust of US citizens. There is no question about it. Meanwhile, however, “Software Patents On [are] The Ropes In SCOTUS,” Robert Pogson claims, citing some recent filings/proceedings. Where is Groklaw when you need it? Having witnessed the Bilski case some years ago (famous case at SCOTUS), we are highly sceptical of the possibility that anything significant will happen. SCOTUS is typically doing what the corporations are asking for. As TechDirt put it the other day: “Four years ago, the Supreme Court had a chance to establish once and for all whether or not software was patentable. The Bilski case got all sorts of attention as various parties lined up to explain why software patents were either evil, innovation-killing monsters or the sole cause of innovation since the cotton gin and everything in between (only slight exaggeration). Rather than actually answer the question everyone was asking, the Supreme Court decided to rule especially narrowly, rejecting the specific patents at stake in the case and saying that the current test used to determine patentability (the so-called “machine-or-transformation” test) need not be the only test for patentability. However, it declined to say what tests should be used, leaving it up to the lower courts to start ruling blindly, making up new tests as they went along. And muddle along blindly they did — right up to the height of pure absurdism in the CAFC (appeals court that handles patents) ruling in the Alice v. CLS Bank case, in which every single judge disagreed with each other. The ruling was 135 pages of confused mess where all justices only agreed on a single paragraph, which (like Bilski) said this particular patent was invalid, but no one could agree why.”

Let’s wait and see if the SCOTUS can surprise all of us by effectively putting at peril all software patents (in one fell swoop). This is the most important thing for Free software. The Register has this new article about “More software patent silliness,” noting that in China there are software patent applications, e.g. one relating to Wine on ARM (we covered that a few days ago.

“The filing has irritated Wine contributor André Hentschel,” the author says, “who points to his code commits from 2010, and remarks that “from my point of view there are no facts in that potential patent that should be patented”.

“Whether that’s sufficient to block the Chinese patent application CN102364433 is another question.”

We need to stop software patents in the US before they spread further. The tendency is for US law to get exported to almost every continent.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Supreme Court ruling on campaign contributions: More clout for the rich

    The wealthiest 1% of Americans will likely play an even larger role in elections following the Supreme Court decision Wednesday that freed rich donors to give as much as $3.5 million per election to the array of candidates running for Congress.

    The 5-4 decision struck down a Watergate-era limit that barred a single donor from giving more than $123,200 to congressional candidates every two years.

  2. Supreme Court strikes down aggregate campaign giving limits
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. More Utter Shame Unveiled at Battistelli's EPO: Intimidation Tactics With Help From 'Control Risks'

    The unaccountable thugs who run the EPO have hired London-based spooks to help silence their opposition and their critics



  2. GNU/Linux Still Under Attack From Apple and Microsoft, Patents Remain the Weapon of Choice

    A timely reminder of the importance of patent matters, for they are being used to eliminate the zero-cost advantage of Free/libre software and make it more proprietary, privacy-infringing, and user-hostile (as a result of blackmail)



  3. Gartner Group and NASSCOM: Will Lie for FUD, on Behalf of Microsoft and Proprietary Software

    Some of the latest arguments against Free/libre software turn out to be arriving from couriers of Microsoft and its agenda



  4. Windows is a Franchise in Demise, Don't Believe the Hype

    Ongoing propaganda about Vista 10, 'cloud', and other buzzwords or brands are put in perspective



  5. Links 21/5/2015: Fedora 22 RC2, CERN Chooses OpenStack

    Links for the day



  6. Microsoft is Again Showing Its Hatred of Free/Open Source Software by Lobbying the Indian Government to Drop a Rational National Policy

    Microsoft decides to attack Free/Open Source software (FOSS) in India, where the corporate media is very much complicit in misleading the public



  7. Links 20/5/2015: Containers, OpenStack, and EXT4 Corruption

    Links for the day



  8. The PATENT Act, Distraction of Trolls, and Lobbying for Software Patents by Protectionists

    Only large corporations and their lawyers are able to formally change the US patent system through public officials and politicians, despite recent rulings from very high courts



  9. Corporate Media and Friends of Microsoft Are Still Lying About the Cost of Vista 10

    In a desperate effort to beat operating systems that are Free (libre) and free (gratis), such as GNU/Linux or Android, Microsoft shores up the illusion of 'free' (gratis) Windows



  10. Links 19/5/2015: Linux 4.1 RC4, Thunderbird 31.7.0, OpenStack Event

    Links for the day



  11. Links 18/5/2015: Russia Chooses Jolla, Many New Distro Releases, Meizu Devices

    Links for the day



  12. Even Converting an Image to Greyscale is Now a Patent

    Simple mathematics becoming patented as Fujifilm claims 'ownership' of photographic conversion to greyscale



  13. Grooming of the World's Biggest Patent Troll, Nathan Myhrvold of Microsoft and Intellectual Ventures

    UCLA and Microsoft-linked media are framing big thugs as heroes, doing a great disservice to both academia and journalism



  14. The EPO's Fight to Bring Software Patents Into Europe is One Step Closer to a 'Victory' (for Multinationals)

    Opposition to the Unified Patent Court (UPC) is being crushed and Italy is one of the latest actors to have fallen in the battle



  15. Microsoft's 'Former' Staff Continues With His Anti-Google Rhetoric at CBS

    A Microsoft intern, who has moved on to journalism, is still showing his affinity for Microsoft with apologetics and spin



  16. More of Microsoft's False Claims About Cost of Vista 10 and More Layoffs

    Vista 10 is still being marketed using lies and Microsoft may be going down the same route as Nokia



  17. Microsoft Remotely Bricks -- Intentionally -- Xbox One

    Microsoft is showing off its kill switches, kills consoles of people whom it doesn't like



  18. IRC Proceedings: May 3rd - May 16th, 2015

    Many IRC logs



  19. Links 17/5/2015: NuTyX Saravane 15.05, Panasonic and Firefox OS

    Links for the day



  20. Links 16/5/2015: MAME Free Software. Rust 1.0, New Wine

    Links for the day



  21. Links 15/5/2015: GNOME 3.16.2, GNU Guix 0.8.2

    Links for the day



  22. Links 15/5/2015: Skrooge Releases, Linux 3.14.42, Linux 3.10.78

    Links for the day



  23. "VENOM" FUD Attack -- Like "Heartbleed" FUD Attack -- Linked to Microsoft

    Why CrowdStrike™ is motivated to smear Free software and establish a stigma of insecurity in Free software-based virtual machines/'clouds'



  24. Spinning Microsoft's Inability to Sell Windows (or Office) as a Strength

    The 'cloud' mindset, which is promoted by surveillance fanatics, increasingly used to pretend that Microsoft has a bright future, despite declining sales



  25. New Windows Ransomware: No Branding, Not Even a Mention of Windows

    New example of media bias which completely omits Windows and spares Microsoft as that may lead to bad publicity



  26. VENOM® is Not a Serious Bug, It's Just a Marketing Campaign From CrowdStrike

    Many journalists bamboozled into becoming couriers of CrowdStrike, an insecurity firm which tries to market itself using a name and logo for a very old bug



  27. Links 13/5/2015: GNU/Linux PCs in Russia, Fedora 22 Freeze

    Links for the day



  28. Does Anyone Still View Cyanogen as Anything But a Microsoft Proxy?

    The marriage of convenience between Microsoft and Cyanogen helps reaffirm CyanogenMod's status as a Microsoft Trojan horse which must be rejected



  29. Open Source Revisionism of GNU and Free Software History

    Media mistreatment of the very roots of Free/Open Source software (FOSS), which is now approaching 35 years in age and increasingly thriving



  30. Microsoft Wants GNU/Linux Users and Developers Addicted to Microsoft APIs by Means of Cross-Platform Proprietary Software

    Microsoft's proprietary software, such as Visual Studio Code and PowerShell, thrown at GNU/Linux users in an effort to promote Microsoft's way of doing things and re-enforce lock-in


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