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15 May 2007

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"If your name is on a software patent, you should be ashamed."... [Read More]

Comments

Sina

I couldn't agree more. I think Microsoft's lawyers just wanted something to get paid for. It's ridiculous, and just one more example of mismanagement of what could be an incredible company.

I know it's not Ray Ozzie's job, but you really figure he would shout at Gates/Balmer for letting something like this happen.

Wayne

This has got to be one of the most bone headed moves Microsoft has made. So far. Every time I think they've reached bottom they surprise me and go even lower.

Are customers interested in this sort of thing? No, customers are interested in great products that make them more productive, and let them do what they want to do. Customers do however notice bullies, and Microsoft sounds like the biggest bully on the street right now.

I do love your idea though - and would be happy to contribute, but I live outside the United States, and that is where the battle needs to be fought.

Wayne

John Eckman

I tell ya, the name of your blog makes more and more sense all the time. (http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/269700.html)

Mike McNally

Sina - it doesn't matter who uncovers prior art for a US patent. Once the prior art is identified, it's identified - anybody can then see that fact for themselves.

Cassandra

There is the small matter of triple damages if you are found to have infringed a patent "willfully". This is why most people recommend *not* searching for patents. That, and that software developers aren't lawyers anyway.

If MS wants to cry "Patent infringement!" then it's also MS's burden to specify which patents are being infringed. And *that* is when I will start caring, because right now I can honestly say that to the best of my knowledge, I don't know which patents MS could possibly be talking about.

Wesley Parish

Another matter to raise in relation to the "intellectual property rights" metaphor - the IT industry has this nifty little thing called the Internet and the World Wide Web, with which to act as the world-wide control for world wide trade.

Previously, the focus of much of the world wide trade was the sea. And there was a property right called "salvage", which dealt with how much it was worth to remove potentially damaging debris in the form of derelict ships, from busy shipping lanes, harbours, and ports.

Software patents now appear to be a form of derelict that threatens trade; and thus warrants a maritime lien - in the form, I suggest, of the source code of the major product/s alleged to be "defended" by software patents whenever used in an aggressive manner.

Of course, Microsoft isn't aware of small matters such as salvage law when they rabbit on about "IPR" which they "respect", much in the way a cook respects the lobster he's boiling alive, it would appear.

It would soothe my mind no end to know that whenever these Microsoft senior executives pursue a policy of opening their mouths and inserting their feet, they did at least anoint them with ketchup, to hide the revolting taste.

AB

I still believe that all unsubstantiated claims of infringement, meant to force other people (individuals or companies) into contracts they would not willfully sign, is a form of terrorism which will damage the economic system of a country.

Ubuntu-Zenwalk User

There is also the distinct possibility that thorugh these deals, Microsoft will tie up the high level portion of the organization and keep them from creating work arounds with the patents when Microsoft unleashes its brigade of patent lawyers. Then it is a matter of money and desperation to keep the courts to rule that Microsoft is not a distribution vendor by the wording of the GPL v3. Corporate crimes, which would lead to that kind of ruling, are the most violent and well planned of all forms of organized crime.

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