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Re: W3C's Response to Public Comments on the Patent Policy Framew ork Working Draft

From: Anthony W. Youngman <Anthony.Youngman@ECA-International.com>
Date: Tue, 2 Oct 2001 08:42:08 +0100
Message-ID: <0EF9DEABA42FE547BAE43D0298F146B20D2EE2@ESP.eca-international.com>
To: "'www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org'" <www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org>
Bearin gin mind the fuss over free software and RAND, my feeling would be to
define RAND to include the following:

"In order to be considered as RAND, any licensing policy *must* include an
option whereby the royalties consist solely of a percentage of fees received
by the developer".

I'm not sure how you'd get round the situation where one guy developed it,
and another guy distributes it, with the intention of passing back-handers
to the developer, but you could include an explicit "good faith"
requirement, where it would be a breach of this licence if a developer
expected to benefit as a direct consequence of the software or whatever, but
in a form which would avoid royalties. (I'm thinking in particular of the
way MS licenced the original IE from Spyglass... they agreed exactly this
royalty agreement and then bundled IE "for free"! And they pulled a similar
trick with the original MS-DOS!)

But that gets very neatly round the free software problem - the developer
doesn't benefit so even if the fee were set at 200% there'd be no problem
:-)


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Received on Tuesday, 2 October 2001 03:42:33 GMT

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