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   RE: [xml-dev] Patent non-proliferation and disarmament

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> 1.  The web would not have emerged without non-royalty 
> based standards.  ... This is undecidable.

If the inventor of the web says so, then it is decideable.  For example, 
it is safe to assume he wouldn't have used an sgml-derived markup if it 
required license fees.
> 2.  The open source community health is of vital importance
> to the success of the web.   ... This is undecidable

It is safe to say that without free Apache, the web would not have started 
in the research and academic environment that it did.  Without NCSA 
Mosaic, MSFT IE would not have had its initial start.

Sure, without Apache, some of those >50% would be running a commercial 
product, but some would not.  There would clearly be fewer web sites (and 
let's not discount those who first started with a "free" server, then got 
mgmt buyin and bought product); the only talking point is if its "much"
fewer or "very much" fewer.

> more, that the economic value of the web was vastly increased 
> by the MS hegemony.

Two reactions: first, MS hegemony seems not to be sufficient for web 
services to take off. Second, there's more to the web than just economic 
value, isn't there?

I'm skipping #3.

> In fact, the most productive response 
> the W3C can make is to show and prove that its technologies can 
> add value to this process.

?  As in "we think this will make someone a lot of money, so patents are 
important" ?

> If the claimnant cannot be required to exercise 
> due dilligence, the USPTO is not at fault.

If you believe this, then your understanding of the US patent system is 
seriously flawed.  Perhaps enough to render your whole viewpoint suspect.

> open source standards groups enjoy no special 
> privileges de jure.

This is wrong; the offer protection from restraint of trade and other 
monopolistic crimes.  Being an open (as in, anyone can join who meets the 
published criteria) organization DOES convey benefits.

> 9.  RAND will hurt open source developers 
> Open source developers are not a privileged group.

Given their historical impact on development of the Internet and the web, 
and the belief that this will continue, many believe otherwise.

> o  RAND discriminates against the poor (developers or developing countries) 
> Economic discrimination based on the ability to pay is not against the 
> law.

Keep this in mind when you read the end. :)

> o RAND will stifle innovation and reduce choice 
> This is paranoia.

You have clearly not worked in a highly-patented field.  I've spent years 
in public-key infrastructure, and I tell you that you're wrong.

> o  Universal access and RAND are incompatible 
> This is demonstrably false.

How so?  You're only "rebuttal" to the point that it discriminates against 
the poor was that it's not illegal to do so.  If the poor cannot 
participate -- if the developing world cannot afford license fees to 
implement major protocoks -- then universal access is impossible.



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