OS3G - Open Source, 3rd Generation

A (humble) attempt to publish news from the trenches where Free/Libre/Open-Source Software is brought to the mainstream -- and Francois Letellier's blog, too

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Software Patents Strike Back?

It's a long story. Software patents in Europe... Too long to cover in this blog actually, and heavily covered already in so much material. ObjectWeb issued a position paper about swpats (by the way, the English translation is loosy). If you read French, I published a paper about the reasons why Europe should be very careful with regards to software patents.

So what's going on? The plenary vote of the second reading on the European software patent directive will be held around 5 July, 2005. The FFII (Federation for a Free Information Infrastructure) calls SMEs for participation in a conference with European MEP from the European People's Party, a "EU-level party which incorporates 38 like-minded national parties of the center-right".

Quoting the call: "If you are an SME representative you are invited to speak for 2-3 minutes and sit in a privileged panel during the session. The authentic voice of entrepreneurs is particularily needed since the support for FFII's postion has been weakened in EPP (and also in ALDE) due to intense lobbying from EICTA, BSA, CompTIA and other organisations, falsely claiming they represent you and your company's interest."

This is to make the voice of small companies better heard -- because in Europe, the software market is highly fragmented and the "economic majority" is made of SMEs. Most European software companies I meet consistently speak against software patents. Just to give one example, Engineering Ingegneria Infomatica (which is not a SME, but still an European software company, one of the leading IT companies in Italy), publicly spoke against software patents.


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