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   Re: The next wave: patent your DTDs

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  • From: Len Bullard <cbullard@hiwaay.net>
  • To: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
  • Date: Wed, 15 Mar 2000 18:50:31 -0600

Tim Bray wrote:
> I'm making an effort to let my amusement over the profound silliness of
> patenting a DTD counteract my disgust at the business climate that makes
> this kind of behavior thinkable. 

This surprises you?  Despite the notion that copyrights may be 
more appropriate, shouldn't they be able to protect their IP?
Patenting seems a little expensive for this.

The fact that unless two entities share a common definition 
makes the DTD nothing more than a design document 
doesn't say much for their plan to reuse it or sell it.
Dumb and dumber.  We went through this problem with GE 
as early as 1989 when they and/or the Navy wanted IP 
protection for the DTDs we wrote then.

The auto industry has a copyright on their DTD and they used it. 
In many relational db businesses, copyrighting the schema 
is assumed and distributing it to customers comes with 
the usual warnings about redistribution.  Almost anything 
from the W3C comes with a copyright and I suspect, so 
will anything from OASIS.  

As for the business climate, as the twig is bent....


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