[Fsfe-ie] EU Software Patents directive

James Heald j.heald at ucl.ac.uk
Tue Nov 18 13:22:24 CET 2003

Ben North wrote:
> James Heald wrote:
>>Summary of the latest situation:
>>	http://www.ffii.org.uk/latest.html
>>Extracts from the US Government FTC report, which is *devastating* about  software patents.
>>	http://www.ffii.org.uk/ftc/ftc.html
> Earlier this morning, I spent a couple of minutes on the phone to the
> Dept of Enterprise, Trade, and Employment, trying to find the name of
> somebody to write to about the impending meeting of the EU
> Competitiveness Council.  I spoke to a helpful woman called Erica
> Colley, who said that it had not yet been decided who would attend the
> meeting, but that if I were to email my concerns to her, she would pass
> them on.  Her address is
>    erica _UNDERSCORE_ colley _AT_ entemp _DOT_ ie
> (with appropriate decoding).
> I don't know whether the Dept has decided on a position to take at the
> meeting, but it can do no harm if they were to receive a few emails
> and/or letters pointing out the reasons why the amended directive
> approved by the Parliament should not be weakened.  The conclusions of
> the US FTC are, as James says, pretty clear about the problems caused
> by software patents.
> I've just sent off such an email to Erica, and I'll let the list know if
> there's any response.
> Ben.

Of course the danger is that the real decision is the one being taken by 
the patent officials tomorrow...

The best way to try to influence things in Ireland is probably through 
the MEPs who took such a solid line, and see whether they can explain 
the issue to their colleagues in the Dail.  Getting a good nucleus of 
MPs who have read up on the issues is probably the most effective 
lobbying group to influence the Irish decision.

And try to find out who goes tomorrow of course -- the Commission look 
like they are very much going to try to lull the representatives into 
not realising what they're voting away, so if you can sharpen the Irish 
delegate's wits berfore tomorrow's meeting, that would be good.

All best,


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