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Re: Patent Policy Framework Working Draft

From: Alan Truesdale <alan@mlug.ca>
Date: Tue, 2 Oct 2001 11:08:37 -0400
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
Message-Id: <01100211083700.05435@caldera.wellconnected.ca>
Dear Sirs/Madames,
Current patent policy in the US is anti-capitalist, undemocratic, and 
un-American. The founding fathers including Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin 
would be ashamed of it. Please do not blindly follow it.

"If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of 
exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, 
which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to 
himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession 
of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it." 
-- Thomas Jefferson

Jefferson hated the idea of monopolies to paraphrase his words  "the needs of 
the people will be subject to the corruptions of the few"


While most people of intelligence understand that the notion of intellectual 
property must be examined, most of good heart want to redress how the system 
got so skewed that million (yes one every five seconds) of children die each 
year because their parents can not afford medication (the intellectual 
property of western pharmaceutical companies). It sickened me to hear a 
spokesperson for Merck Frost saying on the Radio that they would "fight to 
the end to protect their god given American right to their intellectual 
property" referring to a legal proceeding against South Africa for making 
anti AIDS drugs. Yes the pharmaceutical companies backed off, they have taken 
their fight to the WTO and the WIPO. Is the W3C interested in becoming an 
organization as politically charged as the WTO?

Your actions in producing the RAND document are legitimizing current IP 
practices. They can not be taken without context. While intellectual property 
privileges should be extended to some people or organizations in some cases, 
they should not be treated as a right. No matter what your intentions are or 
how reasonable you believe you are being you are adding weight to a 
significant problem. This is not your mandate. You should not be taking 
political positions. IP is political it is part of a battle of intellectual 
colonialism some (not all)  western corporations are waging against the 
peoples of the world. If you want to stay relevant you might want to give 
this battle a miss.

Till yesterday the LUG site I administer had about 100 links to W3C they have 
been removed pending the outcome of this issue. If it is necessary for our 
movement to create a parallel standards board for the internet, it is almost 
certain your position will make many agencies governmental and non 
governmental throughout the world (those interested in maintaining open and 
free standards on the net) party to this project. If the signatories of the 
RAND proposal ignore it, well no big deal, they have consistently ignored the 
W3C, unless you prove to be a useful tool in promoting their agenda. It is 
the open source and free software groups that take you seriously. 

Of these signatories to the RAND proposal not one has even a valid (well 
formed) home page as examined by the W3C validation service.
http://ww.ibm.com, 
http://www.microsoft.com, 
http://www.msn.com, 
http://www.hotmail.com, OK MS three strikes your out. 
http://www.sun.com, 
http:www.apple.com
http://www.hp.com,
http://www.nortel.com

Of course
http://www.redhat.com has no errors.

The W3C is an supposed to be organization that promotes transparency and open 
standards. To let organizations that don't even care enough to apply those 
standards set them is ludicrous.

Yours truly,

Alan Truesdale

-- 
Alan Truesdale
Web Manager
http://www.mlug.ca
alan@mlug.ca
Received on Tuesday, 2 October 2001 11:09:00 GMT

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