W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org > October 2001

RAND comments.

From: Greg Wilkins <gregw@mortbay.com>
Date: Fri, 05 Oct 2001 12:31:14 +1000
Message-ID: <3BBD1B72.8070703@mortbay.com>
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org


Hello,

I am the director of a small software consultancy with offices in Sydney
Australia and London UK.  We currently have 5 consultants and our business
is modelled around truely open standards.

For the last 5 years we have maintained an opensource HTTP server and
Servlet container (http://jetty.mortbay.org).   For us, this has been
a loss-leader - such that the time we spend developing this product is
more than made up for by the consulting revenues that we get assisting
out clients to use these openstandards.

If the W3C allows patents to be included in the "open" standards, then
our business model will no longer work.  We will not be able to afford
to license technology for open standards - even if this is at very low
levels.

If we are unable to track the latest/greatest developments, then our
business model will no longer work.  We will be out of business and
5 years of effort wasted.

While I am not totally opposed to software patents, I believe that
if a company wishes to hold and enforce a software patent, then they
should do so on an entirely proprietry basis.   If their inovation
is truely worthwhile then they will be able to make their money
from proprietry software.

However, I do not see why open standards should be used to give
commercial benefits to companies holding software patents.  It is
trying to have the best of both worlds.   Either the technique is theirs
on only available to their direct licensees OR they make the technique
free for all and a true open standard, then they can benefit from the
publicity and from the fact that they should have the best expertize
and products for the technology.

Why should other companies pay the patent holder so that they can
implement and increase the availability of a proprietry software
techniques?    RAND will take away our choices - because we all know
that we should be standards compliant, I will no longer have the
choice to license or not license a particular patented software
technique.

I will never use the limited resources of my company to promote and
distribute the patented techniques of a competitor.  We would walk
away from the standards rather than follow in that direction.

regards



-- 
Greg Wilkins<gregw@mortbay.com>          GB  Phone: +44-(0)7092063462
Mort Bay Consulting Australia and UK.    Mbl Phone: +61-(0)4 17786631
http://www.mortbay.com                   AU  Phone: +61-(0)2 98107029
Received on Thursday, 4 October 2001 22:31:18 GMT

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