EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

11.30.09

Patents Roundup: Threat of Software Patents in Mexico, Sweden; Microsoft Still Fights with (and for) Software Patents

Posted in Bill Gates, Europe, Law, Microsoft, Novell, Patents at 8:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Mexican flag

Summary: A collection of news reports and important observations about patent legislation that affects Free software

WITH patents on stage performance (Michael Jackson), it is clear that the USPTO has gone too far. But it wants to go further. FFII’s president says that “Software Patents legislation [is] in preparation in Mexico.” NAFTA, anyone? Let’s remember that Novell’s Miguel de Icaza and his probable idol Bill Gates lobbied for OOXML in Mexico.

Separately, the FFII warns that the Lisbon Treaty [1, 2, 3, 4] which Microsoft lobbies for may be related to ACTA, which is another cornerstone in globalisation that marginalises the majority. There is this ongoing analysis which is still a draft, just like ACTA [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14]. But unlike ACTA, it is actually visible.

On Dec. 1, 2009, the European Union Lisbon Treaty will enter into force. (provisional consolidated text) On this page we present a draft analysis of the EU competence to conclude ACTA and other trade agreements.

Generally speaking, the European Parliament’s role becomes more important, the member states loose some of their veto power.

André Rebentisch has this update about the ACTA’s secrecy.

Let me add that 1st of December Art 15 of the Treaty of the Functioning of the EU is set into force. In my German language “confirmatory application” for an ACTA document access to the European Council I argued recently that this takes effects for the ACTA document access regime as well.

Rebentisch also wrote about Microsoft's patent troll, Intellectual Ventures, which is funded by Bill Gates. Microsoft views patents as the future of software. To quote Nathan Myhrvold, “Intellectual property is the next software.”

Microsoft has just patented viral gaming.

The concepts are all based around the current party system, with the most basic simply allowing invited friends to invite their own friends, whether they are known to the original party creator or not.

User-created games are also being patented by Microsoft, as few news sites reveal. Insane software patents know no boundaries.

The authoring features allow users to capture screenshots and video clips, and to use a digital pencil to mark them. It also may allow for audio commentary and tags, and developers can submit their own guides that will take precedence over user-created guides.

Here is the latest about the Alcatel-Lucent case [1, 2, 3]:

A federal appeals court on Monday rejected Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O) request that it reconsider the way patents are upheld in court cases, as the software maker continues its long legal battle with French telecoms equipment company Alcatel-Lucent (ALUA.PA).

Microsoft, which infringed an Alcatel-Lucent patent, according to a lower court jury last year, asked the appeals court to hear its argument that a patent could be held invalid if evidence is presented in a court case that was not available at the time the patent was granted.

As the i4i case taught [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11], Microsoft does not respect other people’s patents. Here is a new update on this case (there are many ongoing cases):

Microsoft’s Struggle With i4i Sheds Light On Software Patent Process

[...]

Microsoft’s recent trials and tribulations with its Word software patent illustrates the difficulty in granting — and defending — software patents. This fall, Microsoft was briefly barred from selling Word because of a dispute over XML code that i4i claimed infringed on one of the Toronto, Ontario-based company’s patents. That trial is ongoing. While some observers questioned why Microsoft didn’t resolve the dispute early on, others are interested to see how the dispute will play out and how patent rights will be determined.

[...]

The Bilski case could provide the Supreme Court with an opportunity to resolve the ongoing debate over the wisdom of having software patents in the first place. At issue is whether a “process” must be tied to a particular machine or apparatus or transform a particular condition into a different state to be considered as patent-eligible subject matter.

The above speaks of some difficulties associated with software patents enforcement. With Bilski still at the centre of debate, it is bound to get worse. Here is a photo of Mr. Bilski, attached to a new report from the FSF’s executive director, Peter Brown.

The Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in a case that could give the free software community (and software developers everywhere) a huge win in the fight against software patents. Free Software Foundation executive director Peter Brown was on the scene, and reflects on the Bilski case, the oral arguments, and the desperate need for change.

Our reader amd-linux has also informed us of this landmark decision of the British High Court regarding software patents (it’s in German).

Fish & Richardson, whom Patent Troll Tracker wrote about a lot [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6], will be cashing in again thanks to frivolous patent lawsuits.

This week: DeepNines collected $25 million when it won an infringement suit against anti-virus software giant McAfee Inc. in the Eastern District of Texas two years ago. But after paying off its Fish & Richardson lawyers and outside investors at Altitude Capital Partners, the small network-security company wound up with less than $800,000 of the $25 million. And now DeepNines is being sued by Altitude, which wants millions more than it’s already gotten. A revealing look at how a leading player in the lawsuit-investment trade does business.

More announcements and news about patents ought to reveal that there are no jackpots here, unless one is a lawyer.

Recently, a jury in a patent infringement case found for the plaintiff, deciding that all three patents-in-suit were “valid” (actually, “not invalid”) and infringed. A happy plaintiff, right? Wrong! The very next day, the Patent Office Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (the B.P.A.I.) ruled that the defendant was actually the first to invent the subject matter of the patents and that rights to these inventions, therefore, belonged not to the plaintiff, but to the defendant.

So why did the patent office attribute these “inventions” to the wrong party in the first place? What a failure.

Last but not least, FFII’s president warns that the “Swedish Presidency conference [is] about UPLS and software patents via the caselaw of a central patent court next 15 and 16 Dec…”

He also alerts his peers about a piece promoting software patents and, needless to say, it is a self-serving placement.

Since the 1960s I have been a strong advocate of the patenting of inventions implemented in software and in 1968 I received the first US patent for an inventive way of sorting data on a digital computer[1].

A man with software patents is defending software patent? No way! How about an impartial point of view from Patently-O? Vested interests invalidate a point of view, as we last explained a week and a half ago.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. US Courts Make the United States' Patent System Sane Again

    35 U.S.C. § 101 (Section 101), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and other factors are making the patent system in the US a lot more sane



  2. Today's USPTO Grants a Lot of Fake Patents, Software Patents That Courts Would Invalidate

    The 35 U.S.C. § 101 effect is very much real; patents on abstract/nonphysical ideas get invalidated en masse (in courts/PTAB) and Director Andrei Iancu refuses to pay attention as if he's above the law and court rulings don't apply to him



  3. A Month After Microsoft Claimed Patent 'Truce' Its Patent Trolls Keep Attacking Microsoft's Rivals

    Microsoft's legal department relies on its vultures (to whom it passes money and patents) to sue its rivals; but other than that, Microsoft is a wonderful company!



  4. Good News: US Supreme Court Rejects Efforts to Revisit Alice, Most Software Patents to Remain Worthless

    35 U.S.C. § 101 will likely remain in tact for a long time to come; courts have come to grips with the status quo, as even the Federal Circuit approves the large majority of invalidations by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) panels, initiated by inter partes reviews (IPRs)



  5. Florian Müller's Article About SEPs and the EPO

    Report from the court in Munich, where the EPO is based



  6. EPO Vice-President Željko Topić in New Article About Corruption in Croatia

    The Croatian newspaper 7Dnevno has an outline of what Željko Topić has done in Croatia and in the EPO in Munich; it argues that this seriously erodes Croatia's national brand/identity



  7. The Quality of European Patents Continues to Deteriorate Under António Campinos and Software Patents Are Advocated Every Day

    The EPC in the European Patent Office and 35 U.S.C. § 101 in the USPTO annul most if not all software patents; under António Campinos, however, software patents are being granted in Europe and the USPTO exploits similar tricks



  8. Team UPC is Still Spreading False Rumours in an Effort to Trick Politicians and Pressure Judges

    Abuses at the European Patent Office, political turmoil and an obvious legislative coup by a self-serving occupation that produces nothing have already doomed the Unitary Patent or Unified Patent Court (UPC); so now we deal with complete fabrications from Team UPC as they're struggling to make something out of nothing, anonymously smearing opposition to the UPC and anonymously making stuff up



  9. Patents on Life and Patents That Kill the Poor Would Only Delegitimise the European Patent Office

    After Mayo, Myriad and other SCOTUS cases (the basis of 35 U.S.C. § 101) the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is reluctant to grant patents on life; the European Patent Office (EPO), however, goes in the opposite direction, even in defiance of the European Patent Convention



  10. EPO 'Untapped Potential'

    "Campinos is diligently looking for ways to further increase the Office’s output without increasing the number of examiners," says the EPO-FLIER team



  11. Links 9/12/2018: New Linux Stable Releases (Notably Linux 4.19.8), RC Coming, and Unifont 11.0.03

    Links for the day



  12. Links 8/12/2018: Mesa 18.3.0, Mageia 7 Beta, WordPress 5.0

    Links for the day



  13. The European Patent Organisation is Like a Private Club and Roland Grossenbacher is Back in It

    In the absence of Benoît Battistelli quality control at the EPO is still not effective; patents are being granted like the sole goal is to increase so-called 'production' (or profit), appeals are being subjected to threats from Office management, and external courts (courts that assess patents outside the jurisdiction of the Office/Organisation) are being targeted with a long-sought replacement like the Unified Patent Court, or UPC (Unitary Patent)



  14. Links 7/12/2018: GNU Guix, GuixSD 0.16.0, GCC 7.4, PHP 7.3.0 Released

    Links for the day



  15. The Federal Circuit's Decision on Ancora Technologies v HTC America is the Rare Exception, Not the Norm

    Even though the PTAB does not automatically reject every patent when 35 U.S.C. § 101 gets invoked we're supposed to think that somehow things are changing in favour of patent maximalists; but all they do is obsess over something old (as old as a month ago) and hardly controversial



  16. The European Patent Office Remains a Lawless Place Where Judges Are Afraid of the Banker in Chief

    With the former banker Campinos replacing the politician Battistelli and seeking to have far more powers it would be insane for the German Constitutional Court to ever allow anything remotely like the UPC; sites that are sponsored by Team UPC, however, try to influence outcomes, pushing patent maximalism and diminishing the role of patent judges



  17. Many of the Same People Are Still in Charge of the European Patent Office Even Though They Broke the Law

    "EPO’s art collection honoured with award," the EPO writes, choosing to distract from what actually goes on at the Office and has never been properly dealt with



  18. Links 6/12/2018: FreeNAS 11.2, Mesa 18.3 Later Today, Fedora Elections

    Links for the day



  19. EPO, in Its Patent Trolls-Infested Forum, Admits It is Granting Bogus Software Patents Under the Guise of 'Blockchain'

    Yesterday's embarrassing event of the EPO was a festival of the litigation giants and trolls, who shrewdly disguise patents on algorithms using all sorts of fashionable words that often don't mean anything (or deviate greatly from their original meanings)



  20. The Patent Litigation Bubble is Imploding in the US While the UPC Dies in Europe

    The meta-industry which profits from feuds, disputes, threats and blackmail isn't doing too well; even in Europe, where it worked hard for a number of years to institute a horrible litigation system which favours global plaintiffs (patent trolls, opportunists and monopolists), these things are going up in flames



  21. Links 5/12/2018: Epic Games Store, CrossOver 18.1.0, Important Kubernetes Patch

    Links for the day



  22. Links 4/12/2018: LibrePCB 0.1.0, SQLite 3.26.0, PhysX Code

    Links for the day



  23. EPO Management Keeps Embarrassing Itself, UPC More Dead Than Before, and Nokia Turns Aggressive

    The EPO’s race to the bottom of patent quality continues, it’s now complemented by direct association with patent trolls and law stands in their way (for they repeatedly violate the law)



  24. The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) and IBM Are Part of the Software Patents Problem in the United States

    IBM's special role in lobbying for software patents (and against PTAB) needs to be highlighted; even Ethereum’s co-founder isn't happy about IBM's meddling in the blockchain space (with help from Hyperledger/Linux Foundation)



  25. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Not Falling for Attempts to Prevent It From Instituting Challenges

    In the face of patent maximalists' endless efforts to derail patent quality the tribunal keeps calm and carries on smashing bad patents



  26. Links 2/12/2018: Linux 4.20 RC5, Snapcraft 3.0, VirtualBox 6.0 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  27. The Patent Microcosm Hopes That the Federal Circuit Will Get 'Tired' of Rejecting Software Patents

    Trolls-friendly sites aren't tolerating this court's habit of saying "no" to software patents; the Chief Judge meanwhile acknowledges that they're being overrun by a growing number of cases/appeals



  28. 35 U.S.C. § 101 Continues to Crush Software Patents and Even Microsoft Joins 'the Fun'

    The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) and even courts below it continue to throw out software patents or send them back to PTAB and lower courts; there is virtually nothing for patent maximalists to celebrate any longer



  29. The Anti-Section 101 (Pro-Software Patents) Lobby Looks at New Angles for Watering Down Guidelines and Caselaw

    By focusing on jury trials and patent trolls the proponents of bunk, likely-invalid abstract patents hope to overrule or override technical courts such as the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB)



  30. Patent Trolls, USPTO Director Andrei Iancu and Section 101

    The world’s most important patent office is now run by a courts-hostile person (an 'American Battistelli') who is happy to ignore the courts’ caselaw and listen to patent trolls instead; this means that science and technology, not to mention the law itself, will suffer


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts