06.18.10

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After Harbouring Microsoft’s OOXML Corruption, Alan Bryden Can Promote/Inhibit Software Patents in Europe

Posted in ISO, Microsoft, Open XML, Patents at 3:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

ISO for sale
Photo from the public domain

ISO standards for saleSummary: Alan Bryden of ISO infamy may now be hurting Europe as well, essentially by using ‘standards’ to help bring software patents to the continent

IS Alan Bryden the new Van Der Beld [1, 2, 3]? Two years ago we showed how Bryden helped Microsoft deny its corruption (he was also mentioned in [1, 2]) when Microsoft resorted even to bribery in order to derail/exploit ISO.

Alan Bryden is coming to Brussels (see page 41 of this document [PDF]) and according to this short report his agenda is potentially similar to that of Microsoft lobbyists, who want to put (software) patents inside standards in a continent which is against such patents.

Wednesday morning, 23 June 2010 Alan Bryden, the former ISO general secretary who let it happen and made European standard setting organisations a laughing stock of an US corporation, would speak about “European standardisation in a global environment” in the European Parliament “Internal Market and Consumer protection (IMCO) committee.

Bryden was also a member of the Commission’s EXPRESS “expert panel” group on the future of European Standardisation which report advises for strong IPR policies against open standardization. The IMCO meeting relates to the Parliament phase of the EXPRESS process and the Future of European Standardisation. Read what the winding lobby snakes write in their report to actually promote standards locked down by software patents

Glyn Moody has remarked on these findings as well as others which we covered this morning [1, 2].

Let’s be frank: standards are pretty dull; but they are also important as technological gatekeepers. As the shameful OOXML saga showed, gaining the stamp of approval can be so important that some are prepared to adopt practically any means to achieve it; similarly, permitting the use of technologies that companies claim are patented in supposedly open standards can shut out open source implementations completely.

Against that background, the new EU report “Standardization for a competitive and innovative Europe: a vision for 2020” [.pdf] is a real disappointment. For something that purports to be looking forward a decade not even to mention “open source” (as far as I can tell) is an indication of just how old-fashioned and reactionary it is.

The president of the FFII says that the “EU [is] promoting the RAND term, aims to get rid of Free Software”; Separately today he wrote that the “EU [plans] to abandon its powers of harmonization of patent laws in favor of an autonomous international patent system [PDF]

What is happening in Europe? Have enough lobbyists been gathered to impose software patents upon Europe through standards, which are almost the antithesis of monopoly, at least in principle?

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A Single Comment

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    June 19, 2010 at 1:46 pm

    Gravatar

    Neelie Kroes has returned to her earlier, Pro-Microsoft position.

    There are also no technical magazines left anywhere and all remaining media seems to have ties to Microsoft via staff or advertising.

    Further, with all the bluster about networking security, not one single government has made progress in getting the public to stop using software designed to spread malware. In some countries, even if there has been a mandate in some sectors to use Open Source, Microsofters have displaced IT staff and abuse their position to make witch hunts against and drive out any remaining individuals that might be even remotely competent with technology. That leaves only Microsofters.

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