[Fsfe-ie] Morning Ireland piece on Software Patents

Ian Clarke ian at locut.us
Thu May 6 15:02:06 CEST 2004

Ben North wrote:
> Ciaran O'Riordan wrote:
>>[...] I'm missing (at least) one piece of info: why would a venture
>>capitalist want software to be patentable?
> This is one possible argument for why venture capitalists might be in
> favour of software patents.  It is pure speculation on my part, of
> course.

I think you might be overestimating the legal expertise of most venture 
capitalists ;-)

VCs value companies based on their assets, IP is an asset, more IP is 
therefore good, software patents are IP, therefore software patents are 

This may seem simplistic, but as someone who has had quite a bit of 
contact with VCs over the years, it is, unfortunately, pretty accurate.

Many VCs don't even know what software patents do.  For example, ask the 
average VC to explain the difference between a software patent and a 
trade secret, and you are likely to get a blank stare.


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