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RE: What is "reasonable" anyway?

From: Stern, Richard H. <RSTERN@KHHTE.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 15:56:59 -0400
Message-ID: <018485C1606CD4119BD200D0B7914B00DC6753@EXCHANGE>
To: "'Federico Heinz'" <fheinz@vialibre.org.ar>, www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
The issue of what are RAND terms is insufficiently addressed in stadard
setting organizations. It tends (incorrectly) to be regarded as self
defining.  A number of controversies have arisen in the past about whether a
given practice is RAND or unrweasonable or discriminatory.

For example, is refusal to license except on reciprocity terms RAND?  After
initial opposition,k this now seems to be accepted.

Is it all right to refuse to license somebody who sues you? After the
Intel-Intergraph suit, the answer seems to be that this is reasonable.

What about special conditions, such as I will license it royalty free if you
make my implementation the sole permissible way to implement the standard?
(An IEEE 802.11 issue.) (Then I get to sell my chipsets which I am first on
the market with. So I capture the market.)

Some of these issues are addressed in "Preventing abuse of IEEE Standards
Policy," IEEE MICRO (May 2001) - to which I show a link:


The George Washington Univ Law School is having a 1-day program on such
issues in April 2002.  A link to its site describing the program is:


Best wishes

Richard H. Stern
rstern@computer.org   rstern@khhte.com
Kellogg Huber Hansen Todd & Evans
1615 M Street NW - Suite 400
Washington DC 20036

-----Original Message-----
From: Federico Heinz [mailto:fheinz@vialibre.org.ar]
Sent: Wednesday, October 24, 2001 12:03 PM
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
Subject: What is "reasonable" anyway?

Maybe many of the objections raised in this forum could be appeased by a
more precise definition of the meaning of the word "reasonable" in this
particular context. One can easily imagine terms that are "reasonable"
when the licensee is a large corporation, but become prohibitive for
free software developers.

Maybe the W3C could specify that, to be considered reasonable, the
license terms must grant the same rights as royalty-free license, but
may require payment of a fee than cannot exceed a given percentage of
the expected monetary return from the sale of restricted-use licenses of
the resulting program. This way, RAND and RF become equivalent for free
software developers, who release their programs under licenses that make
that specific return equal to zero.

	Federico Heinz
Received on Wednesday, 24 October 2001 15:57:28 UTC

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