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

W3C - Self examination time!

From: Blake Courtney <blake.courtney@ecathexis.com>
Date: Tue, 23 Oct 2001 23:55:19 -0500
Message-ID: <3BD649B7.E4327F9C@ecathexis.com>
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
The W3C as an organization as a whole needs a simple hard line approach
with members. 

Contributions to standards proposals and their subsequent
are public, open and free of any intellectual property rights, patents
or claims, period.

If a particular contributor feels that they have a piece of IP covered
by patent which can "benefit" the world community they can:

1) Write an API and sell or license it as a product.
2) Keep the IP to themselves and add value to their platform or
   product offerings.

This doesn't limit their ability to make money from their offerings.

Some members of the W3C want to have their cake and eat it too,
it seems they want to see a return on their W3C "investment".

Large corporations are attempting to leverage the clout of the
W3C to their own benefit. 

W3C is well aware of this but seems to be lacking the spine to take 
care of this issue. 

The fact is that most large corporations will participate in a standards
body to the extent that it is "useful" ( profitable ) to them as
a company. Those willing to participate regardless of a guaranteed
return are contributors in the true sense of the word, and as such
should be allowed to develop a standard. If a participant has
IP that is just so great it's patentable, then it needs to stay
with that participant and out of the standard all together. This
assures a level playing field for which participants and non
alike to develop competing products when a standard is adopted.

The patent issue complicates this greatly.

It seems after paying a high cost to become a participant, one is 
essentially guaranteed revenue through causal participation, occasional
patent filing whenever possible.

This is hardly technical standards development and would greatly
reduce the actual value of W3C as a true standards body to a 
good old private country club.
Received on Wednesday, 24 October 2001 00:47:52 UTC

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