Lists Home |
Date Index |
ACK!!! GET OFF MY FOOT!!! YOU BLOODY FURRY VERMIN!!!
I think your interpretation is correct, and that is
ok. Otherwise, formation of a WG and participation
without RF commitments would be tantamount to asking
an organization to leave the consortium. Consider the
depth of some of the patent portfolios and it is
unlikely one can do any specification work without
tripping over someone's patent.
The past is past. What we are dealing with are world wide
systems that must interoperate. This flies directly into
strategies to create an IP economy. I do understand this
because a company with valid patents and licensing can
fold that into the valuation of the company, the stock
analysts see that, and the value of the company increases
(say stock price goes up). That's legitimate. On the
other hand, if we want larger markets then participation
in the consortia for the construction of the world wide
systems are required. Companies that get booted from
the consortia or create the perception that they are
illegitimately and fraudulently creating or perpetuating
monopolies over vital technological markets begin to
lose sales and that detracts from their valuation.
We can lobby and try to use the current administration's
laissez-faire America Uber Alles attitudes to keep the
DoJ off our backs, but this is a WORLD economy and nations
are starting to notice this stuff. At the end of the day,
a company might want to notice that their ethics and their
honor are on display here.
Maybe it doesn't matter to some, but I believe over time,
it will matter to their customers because if we are
willing to cheat our partners and allies, what can be
expected of us with regard to our customers?
QUIT BITING MY FOOT, RODENT!!!!
(speaking personally and not for my employer)
From: Michael Champion [mailto:email@example.com]
Welllllll ... not exactly. See
http://www.w3.org/Consortium/Patent-Policy-20040205/ Not having been
tortured by giant squirrels in my childhood I'm not inured to the pain
that studying this document closely would inflict, but the essence
seems to be: "As a condition of participating in a Working Group, each
participant (W3C Members, W3C Team members, invited experts, and
members of the public) shall agree to make available under W3C RF
licensing requirements any Essential Claims related to the work of
that particular Working Group. " Presumably companies do an internal
patent search to understand what they would be making available before
joining a WG, but that's not part of the W3C process. So, there's no
guarantee that the spec can be implemented without impinging upon a
patent, there's only a promise by patent holders ON THE WG to licence
it on RF terms FOR THE PURPOSE OF IMPLEMENTING THE SPEC. Likewise
there is a mechanism for excluding specific patents ... I *think* this
is a way of telling the WG "BTW, we have a patent on [something or
other] that we're not willing to license on RF terms, better make sure
that the spec can be implemented without infringing it" but I could
very easily be mistaken.