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

From: Robert Dean <rdean71@cs.com>
Date: Tue, 02 Oct 2001 09:38:29 -0500
Message-ID: <3BB9D165.3090603@cs.com>
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
I agree with the W3C's goal of trying to deal with issues raised by 
software patents.  The W3C should not get submarined by a non-disclosed 

On the other side of the coin, the W3C's relevence becomes an issue if 
it starts to create recommendations that are encumbered by patented 
technologies requiring an "RAND" license.

There are some specific points that need to be addressed:

- What constitutes Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory?  Literally,
   RAND could mean that all implementors pay the same amount.  However,
   small companies and independent developers cannot afford to pay
   the same amount of royalties that a large company can.  Is the
   W3C willing to participate in creating a webspace where individuals
   are barred from contributing because of the high cost of entry?

   If the W3C creates recommendations encumbered by RAND licenses,
   then it should be an absolute requirement that the licensing fee
   should not represent a barrier to entry for smaller developers,
   not capable of generating the levels of revenue of a Microsoft
   or an IBM.

- The W3C's preference for Royalty Free technologies is not stated
   anywhere near as strongly as it needs to be.

The overriding concern of the W3C should be the implementability of the 
recommendations it creates.  If large companies are the only ones that 
are able to implement, then the W3C should not be endorsing their 

Robert L. Dean
Bloomington, IL, USA
Independent Web Developer
Received on Tuesday, 2 October 2001 10:39:34 UTC

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