[Fsfe-ie] Ms. Harney on Newstalk 106 tomorrow (Friday)

Fergal Daly fergal at esatclear.ie
Thu Apr 15 15:12:20 CEST 2004

Cool. Although you might need to spell some bits out a bit more as we don't
know if McWilliams has the first clue about this. So maybe make number 4
something like

4. A regime of software patents makes it extremely difficult for small
companies or contractors to implement web sites or other software
applications for clients due to the cost in time and money of ensuring that
no patents are infringed.

other points of relevance (but maybe this is too many points)

5. The speed of progress of the IT industry makes it totally unsuitable for
patent protection. By the time a patent has been processed, granted and made
public, it's likely that several other researchers will have indepedently
discovered the same solution.

6. Every programmer is a "researcher", developing their own innovative
solutions to the problems they find, this means there is a massive body of
prior art out there that is impossible to search. This inevitably leads to
the granting of patents for inventions that are not new. Unfortunately
having a patent overturned is still a hugely expensive legal process even
when there is obvious prior art.

Also change populat to popular,


On Thu, Apr 15, 2004 at 08:53:50AM -0500, ?ibhear wrote:
> Hi,
> Perhaps you can bring the following up with the Tanaiste when you are
> speaking with her.
> On Wednesday of this week, hundreds of software engineers and small business
> owners protested in Brussels against the introduction of Software Patents in
> the EU. In September the European Parliament made amendments and
> clarifications to a proposal to prevent it from legalizing software patents,
> yet the European Council's internal working party chose to discard these
> amendments.
> Does the Irish Presidency recognise the risks to innovation and competition
> in the software industry that software patents create, and if so, why
> discard the European Parliaments efforts to address these risks?
> Some points of information:
> 1. The view of the United States' Federal Trade Commission
> is "that software and Internet patents are impeding
> innovation" (FTC report, "To Promote Innovation: The
> Proper Balance of Competition and Patent Law and Policy",
> http://www.ftc.gov/os/2003/10/innovationrpt.pdf, page 165.
> See a summary at http://www.ffii.org.uk/ftc/ftc.html).
> 2. A policy of allowing software patents benefits the large
> companies who hold huge patent portfolios where they are
> --    allowed. Ms. Harney's brief, as Minister for Enterprise,
> Trade and Employment is to encourage innovation and
> invention in Irish businesses.
> 3. Both the websites of the Progressive Democrats and Ms.
> Harney herself are built using populat community
> technologies known as "Apache", "PHP", "MySQL" and
> "FreeBSD". New development in these types of technologies
> would be virtually impossible in a regime of software patents.
> 4. A regime of software patents make it extremely difficult for
> small companies or contractors to implement web sites or
> other software applications for clients.
> Thanks,
> ?ibhear
> ?ibhear ? hAnluain
> Ireland.
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