[Fsfe-ie] Patents: time to do something

Ciaran O'Riordan ciaran at member.fsf.org
Sat Jun 21 23:19:42 CEST 2003

A Call for Action:

The software patents vote happens on the 30th of this month.
We are losing this battle and we are losing because we didn't
bother fighting.

If you want to do something to help Free Software, this is it.
Not many people are doing anything.  This means YOU are elected.

All Irish MEPs have to be contacted.
Please coordinate on this list.  Using the phone is better than
email, email is easily ignored.  In my experience, you will
usually get an answering machine.  Have a short, useful message
planned, and tell them that you are sending them an email with
information and links to useful webpages.

Be informed.  Read as much as you can about this issue.
http://swpat.ffii.org is the definitive resource for this issue.
The website is horrible but that's where the info is.

http://www.softwarepatents.co.uk/ is another good page for
info about the (bad) effects of software patents.

The list of irish MEPs is available at:

The debate centres around Article 52 of the ECP (European
Patent Convetion), which says that "programs for computers"
are in the list of things that "shall not be regarded as inventions".

This seems pretty clear to me, but currently our MEPs are being
asked to remove the legal amibiguity by clarifying that the
opposite it true.

Please plan your actions and get on the phone.  Mail this
list to say what responses you are getting, who has been
contacted etc.

Also mail this list if you have questions about the issues.
You will have to do some research but I/we can help you with
most questions.

The Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII),
together with the Green Party EFA have put together a good
alternative proposal.  It's a good idea to point MEPs to this

I hope to hear from you soon.
Ciaran O'Riordan
(and come to our July 2nd meeting, we have 4 going so far)

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