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Re: Proposal for defining acceptability of RAND licensing model.

From: Daniel Phillips <phillips@bonn-fries.net>
Date: Fri, 5 Oct 2001 18:09:18 +0200
To: David Woodhouse <dwmw2@infradead.org>, www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
Message-Id: <20011005160919Z16708-17200+810@humbolt.nl.linux.org>
Hi David,

I found your analysis very clear and compelling.  However, I do not agree 
with your conclusion.

On October 5, 2001 02:43 pm, David Woodhouse wrote:
> Therefore, while it is appropriate for the W3C to define the terms which are
> considered the _minimum_ acceptable level for licensing of patented
> technology and methods, it should be made clear that such RAND licensing
> schemes are to be considered a last resort, to be accepted only when there
> is no possibility of a timely RF solution to a given problem space.

There is no minimum acceptable level for incorporation of non-free licences 
into public standards, just as there is no such thing as being a little bit 

> I therefore propose that the Patent Policy Framework draft be modified
> accordingly, by adding two new requirements to the existing process of 
> advancement:
> In order for a Last Call Working Draft involving RAND-licensed technology to
> be advanced to Candidate Recommendation or Proposed Recommendation, two
> further conditions must be met in addition to those currently required:
>  - the technical report must have held the status of 'Last Call Working 
>    Draft' for a period of no less than eighteen months prior to the
>    advancement.
>  - the Director must be satisfied that there is no possibility of an
>    alternative Royalty-Free solution for the same problem space being
>    developed within a reasonable amount of time.
> These additional requirements. possibly coupled with further clear guidance 
> that RF-licensed solutions are to be favoured above RAND-licensed 
> alternatives, would ensure that the stated goals of the W3C 
> remain intact, while regulating and recognising the use of patented 
> technology in Recommendations where it is necessary to do so.

I would like to suggest instead that the W3C add the requirement that any 
recommendation it makes be entirely free of non-RF patent encumbrance.  It 
should be spelled out explicitly that where that is not possible, a draft 
recommendation will not procede to becoming a final recommendation.  Other 
procedural steps should be clarified so that W3C members are guaranteed to be 
given proper notification of any call for patent disclosure, so that they may 
respond in a timely and correct way.

Received on Friday, 5 October 2001 12:09:22 UTC

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