Software and Patents

With the second reading of the Patent nightmare going to happen again soon in the EU hearings, here’s some food for thought.

Open source developers step up anti-patent campaign

Projects hope a taste of one possible future will spur people to action

Developers are using shock tactics to persuade the open source community to get involved in the campaign against software patents.

Over the last month various open source projects have replaced their Web home page with one that outlines the risk that the EU Directive on the Patentability of Computer Implemented Inventions, more commonly known as the Software Patent Directive, could pose to free software.

More in the article.

Patent directive slammed at UKPO workshop

Lawyers and developers attending a UK Patent Office workshop were united in their condemnation of the definition of ‘technical contribution’ in the software patent directive

A group of software developers and patent lawyers agreed on Thursday at a UK Patent Office (UKPO) workshop that the definition of technical contribution in the proposed European software patent directive is wrong.

Lord Sainsbury, the minister for science and innovation, and the UK Patent Office agreed to hold the workshops after a public meeting at the end of last year, where software companies and developers expressed their concern about the directive, officially known as the directive on the patentability of computer-implemented inventions.

More in the article.

Software Patent News is a Wiki that very painfully shows the bloody patent battlefield.

Take a peak at the articles on the main page as well as on the Patents in Action page for some sobering information, as well as on the following GNU pages on Examples of Software Patents that hurt Free Software.

In addition to software in general, ecommerce sites have been attacked as shown at or, or any of a bunch of searches online for patent related fiascos.

I would have thought the EU would have learned from other’s mistakes … I really hope they will listen to reason…

NOTE: Originally posted: April 2005 (recreated from mangled original

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