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

Re: [xml-dev] standards vs. the public

From: Jonathan Borden <jborden@mediaone.net>
Date: Tue, 9 Oct 2001 11:01:55 -0400
Message-ID: <021501c150d3$57aa3aa0$0a2e249b@nemc.org>
To: "Bullard, Claude L (Len)" <clbullar@ingr.com>, "Steven R. Newcomb" <srn@coolheads.com>
Cc: <www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org>, <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
Len


[much clipped]
>
> The issue which undergirds many of the
> arguments is cost.  Tim Bray mentions the "toll"
> to get on the Internet.  Others talk about open
> source as if it were a free goldmine for those
> that can exploit the potential (eg, RedHat).
> For the underfunded developer, open source and
> royalty free standards and specifications are a
> means to become BigCos (again, RedHat).  However,
> the cost of creating these is still real and
> in some cases, significant.   One has to ask
> if the public interest is a compelling enough
> argument to require a company that finances its
> research and receives patents to support the
> RedHats of the world.
>
> The other issue is complexity.  Complexity is
> an effective barrier to entry into a market.

I also have a hard time understanding what you are writing much of the time
but we can start with this snippet.

The issue to me is: If a company, has a patented piece of _proprietary_
technology (and I would say that one of the prerequisites of a technology
being proprietary is that it has associated IPR), and that organization
wishes to _promote_ its technology as being some sort of internet
"standard", or as being a recommended practice, then the technology should
be unencumbered. That is the _cost_ to the organization of getting rest of
the WWW community to adopt its technology.

No one is forcing anyone to relinquish their IPR, rather if one desires ones
particular technology (and realize that these little bits of software are
generally useless on their own, rather _depend_ on the Internet
infrastructure which is largely unencumbered, for their _value_) if one
desires their technology to become part of the internet standard practice,
then there are costs associated with this.

In any case, this is the tradition of the internet, so if an organization
doesn't like the rules, it is free to sell its software in a box. If the W3C
cannot understand it, it cannot be considered the organization that sets (de
facto) internet standards.

Jonathan
Received on Tuesday, 9 October 2001 11:01:23 GMT

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