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03.19.16

IBM is Still Pushing for Software Patents Not Only in India But Also in the United States

Posted in Asia, IBM, Patents at 10:40 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Manny Schecter
Manny Schecter, the Chief Patent Counsel from IBM

Summary: The stance of IBM on software patents, which it increasingly weaponises, gives cause for concern not only in the United States but also in nations that relentlessly antagonise the lobbyists and lawyers of the likes of IBM

THE USPTO is moving away from software patents in the sense that it adapts to the Alice rulings. A lot of patent lawyers, however, are freaking out and trying to spread software patents to countries other than the US.

Recently, a lot has been said and written about software patents in India. As this one new article put it, Indian patent law without software patents gives “hope for IT innovation, not litigation”. The author concludes with: “We therefore applaud the Indian Patent Office for revising the guidelines and promulgating a clear test for issuing patents. We believe that these guidelines are some of the clearest guidelines anywhere in the world and we believe this will help innovation, not litigation.”

“A lot of patent lawyers, however, are freaking out and trying to spread software patents to countries other than the US.”Another new article, this one from corporate media, asks: “Should software be patented in a country of over a billion people?”

This should be a rhetorical question. “Industry watchers,” notes the author, “say that it is like saying mathematics can be patented. It can be a minefield for start-ups that will end up battling litigation. That is precisely the reason, free software movement has attracted many programmers around the world. It spurred giants such as Google and Facebook, and seems to be the way forward.”

SFLC is also noted as follows: “SFLC in its blog has said such a test will ensure that applications for patents in the field of software will be rejected and only genuine applications claiming a novel hardware component along with software will be eligible for patent protection.”

“IBM’s Schecter is doing interviews and flirting with apologists of patent trolls and proponents of software patents.”Anivar Aravind, a longtime supporter of ours, wrote yesterday that software patents are “preventing #India CRI guidelines is certainly a painful news for legal startups who troll on #innovation . But not for #StartUpIndia”

As we noted here a few months ago, IBM is still trying to push India to accept software patents and based on this news, IBM is still lobbying for software patents in the US as well (see what Manny Schecter wrote). Shame on IBM, which is becoming a patent aggressor even with software patents these days. IBM’s Schecter is still bemoaning the US crackdown on software patents and people are seeing it; let IBM whine, let its moles in the USPTO do their lobbying. This only serves to demonstrate whose side IBM is really on. IBM’s Schecter is doing interviews and flirting with apologists of patent trolls and proponents of software patents. What are people supposed to conclude based on all this?

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