back to article Red Hat pitches software-patents-free Europe

Red Hat is today expected to join others in making the case against the enforcement of patents in software across the European Union. The company is expected to submit an 11-page report to regulators, which makes the case that patents in software damages innovation in software. If the principles in Red Hat's report are …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Patents in software

    ridiculous. You have copyright and no one can patent logic, that is the crucial thing here, all computers are built on logic, no one can discover logic or engineer logic it just exists. Copyright is all that is needed for software.

    To be honest, Patents as a whole need to go, and soon they will, China tends to ignore them for their home markets, and frankly everything is going their way. Remember their culture far exceeds ours and the only thing holding them back was a complete disregard for their past, and that is changing. The real gems of Chinese culture and learning is in their old arts and they are just to come bang up to date with them.

    We need to transit Patents, and we should be looking at only allowing limited patents per person. Patents are really just toxic debt to a society, we need to remove a lot of them and let people create things.

    It is the exchange of money for creations that moves money through a system. And don't think for one moment people will stop inventing, if anything more will, you can still keep ideas secret, and work on them to produce something in time for market, and other mechanisms can be used to protect an idea if funding is required and the idea has to be shown.

    All the Patent does is claim an idea, someone may have had that idea before or found it after without influence, but the patent stops these innovations and is being misused against innovation, when the original intention was to support innovation.

    Patents need to change, and change fast.

  2. Lee Ward
    Thumb Up

    At long last!

    Software patents need striking out globally. Actually, the whole patents system should be scrapped until the IPO reform the whole system so that evident patent trolls are fined extortionate amounts of money in the bid to stop the system's parasitic abuse. If you have a vague patent that isn't completely clear it shouldn't ever be passed as a patent, it should be publically thrown out in to a site such as the "Patent Office Hall of Shame" as evidence of how not to write a patent (and entertainment, stick ads in and they'll have another form of income).

    I've said to people for years that software patents stifle creativity rather than protect it. are currently trying to suggest they own "System and Method for Enabling Users to Interact in a Virtual Space", essentially, all the same stuff those MMORPGs are made of. They suggest that if they successfully sue Linden Labs (Second Life), they'll go for Blizzard (World of Warcraft) and presumably many others. A classic patent troll.

    Hopefully the report actually does a death to software patents but I'll hold my breath until it actually happens.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    An eleven page report? They're not really serious about getting rid of software patents then, are they.

    Conspiracy (they don't want to get rid of patents, they like the plucky underdog status) or Incompetence (they don't know how to write reports)?

  4. TimNevins


    An eleven page report is good.

    Any longer and it is unlikely to be examined in any real detail.

    They need to get the point across quickly for beaurocrats who are unlikely to read anything longer than a couple of pages.

    If they dropped a 200-page dossier (along with other 200-page submissions from IBM etc)then I can easily see the readers just skimming or ignoring them completely.

    I think in all honesty there is no consp*see

  5. Juillen


    Patents, as a whole, are a good tradeoff. If you're a small inventor, then you have protection against the 'big boys' that'll just swamp you.

    However, a piece of software has far different time limitation characteristics than a new type of valve to be used in Engineering (that can have a production span of decades). In the software world, 5 years is an obsolescense period, so having a patent give you control over aspects of it for 25 years is ludicrous.

    2, maybe 3 years for a software patent if they do implement it is more than sufficient. If it's a really 'must have' idea, then people will pay to get software out the door with that idea implemented in it fast, before they're run out of the market place.

    If it's not earth shakingly good, then you can delay implementing it for a couple of years. The patent does what it's designed to do. Allows the build up of a market, allows a lot of pressure in the early days of market building; enough to build a general standard if the idea is good enough, with the inventor profiting on the early build, then when it becomes a full standard, the invention is opened to all while it's still useful. The clever inventor will have used this period to come up with the next good idea.

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