Hash: SHA1

Patent trolls are getting smarter

,----[ Quote ]
| When you're driving down the highway and you see a spotless white tanker
| truck with a big green tree painted on the side, you can be pretty sure that
| it's full of hazardous waste.
| Likewise, companies with "innovation" in their names are generally
| innovation-hostile patent trolls. The problem isn't just that they file for
| obvious patents, or patents on things that someone else already invented, but
| that they drag the enormous transaction costs of the patent system into the
| flexible world of software, where transaction costs are low.
| [...]
| By now, even the Mainstream Media is safely aware of the need to get rid of
| software patents. When a Cato Institute scholar is writing an
| anti-software-patent op-ed for the New York Times, you can't get much more
| Mainstream than that.


UK appeal court dismisses mod chip conviction

,----[ Quote ]
| The UK court of appeal this week ruled that games console mod chips do not
| bypass copy protection systems and are, therefore, effectively legal here.
| The ruling comes more than six months after Neil Stanley Higgs of Speedwell
| Road, Speedwell, Bristol was found guilty at Bristol Crown Court of 26
| offences under a 2003 amendment to the 1988 Copyright, Designs and Patents
| Act.
| At the time, Higgs vowed to appeal against the verdict - reached unanimously
| by the jury - and just as well: this week, the appeal court quashed all
| charges against him.


Opponents Say Inclusion Of IP Issues Would Set Back WTO Talks

,----[ Quote ]
| A small group of countries opposing the inclusion of intellectual
| property-related issues in World Trade Organization negotiations has issued
| their response to an earlier “non-paper” that had called for IP issues to be
| integrated with the upcoming horizontal, or all-inclusive, negotiations at
| the WTO.



Astronomy Domine

,----[ Quote ]
| What innovations are we stifling right now with patents that lock out the
| scientists, amateur and professional, from research ? What new software can't
| be created due to these restrictions. We may never know what we didn't
| discover or create due to their chilling effects.
| It's like people claiming ownership on particular areas of the sky, and just
| as absurd. “You can't look at that star, it's mine, I patented looking there.
| Here's a coin-operated telescope if you want to peek”. Good luck making
| scientific progress in astronomy with these restrictions.


[ffii] McCreevy wants to legalise Software Patents via a US-EU patent treaty

,----[ Quote ]
| Brussels, 13 May 2008 -- European Commissioner McCreevy is pushing for a
| bilateral patent treaty with the United States. This Tuesday 13 May in
| Brussels, White House and European representatives will try to adopt a
| tight roadmap for the signature of a EU-US patent treaty by the end of
| the year. Parts of the proposed treaty will contain provision on
| software patents, and could legalise them on both sides of the Atlantic.
| "TEC talks are the current push for software patents. The US want to
| eliminate the higher standards of the European Patent Convention. The
| bilateral agenda is dictated by multinationals gathered in the
| Transatlantic Economic Business Dialogue (TABD). When you have a look
| who is in the Executive Board of the TABD, you find not a single
| European SME in there", says Benjamin Henrion, a Brussels based patent
| policy specialist.
| The Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) which comprises EU and US high
| level representatives put a substantive harmonisation of patent law on
| its agenda. Substantive patent law covers what is patentable or not. The
| attempt to impose the low US standards on Europe via the Substantive
| Patent Law Treaty (SPLT) process utterly failed at the World
| Intellectual Property Organisation. Also progress in the WIPO B+
| subgroup (without development nations) could not be reached.


The ghost of software patents is back!

,----[ Quote ]
| Life is never easy for an open source evangelist. The OOXML drama came to a
| close on 2nd April 2008 and we were on to our next issue -- software patents.
| The Draft Patent Manual might end up bringing software patents through the
| back door. this would be surprising because the Indian parliament explicitly
| rejected software patents in the Patent Amendment Act 2005. In this blog, I
| am including extracts from a letter that I sent to the Patent Office on 11th
| April 2008. The deadline for comments was 15th April 2008.

Version: GnuPG v1.4.6 (GNU/Linux)