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

RAND standards

From: Alexander Hristov <ahristov@planetalia.com>
Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2001 10:02:03 +0200
Message-ID: <002b01c14986$31dd0c20$8705ebc3@SERVER>
To: <www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org>
Is the W3C trying to kill itself?

Would there have ever been an Apache server if it had to pay royalties to a dozen companies for a dozen different
patents? Or maybe this is precisely the aim of such a nonsense? - Having seen that we cannot beat the competition
(Apache, php, etc.) neither by making supposedly better products nor by marketing alone, let's use the other dirty

The Web was built by people writing free software long before the corporations entered the playing arena, and was built
around non patented technologies. "Companies would contribute with better technologies"? Well the graveyard is full with
"better technologies" that didn't quite manage to outlive the current, royalty-free, architecture of the Internet.

The W3C must remember whom it serves, otherwise it is guaranteed to produce a rift in the community. And BTW, what does
"Reasonable" exaclty mean? Are $10000 reasonable? Sure they are for the writers of the draft. Does $1 per instance use
seem resasonable? So how about paying $1 per sent cookie? And what if AT&T or Nortel or Microsoft had to pay $100 per
every TCP/IP stack they had running? That would hurt.... And "NON Discriminatory"? Well it sure discriminates against
free software. Any hidden agendas here? It's so sad that W3C has literally sold itself to the proponents of this draft.
And by the way it would discriminate against the american companies since in Europe, there is quite a bunch of
unpatentable stuff that we europeans would be free to use regardless of any US patents, without paying a single penny.

If a company refuses to provide royalty-free use of any techology then to hell with them. As history and market have
proven, for every patented technology there is a way to do things better, or differently enough as to avoid violating
the patent.

"It is expected that the new Patent Policy will make it easier for WGs to conduct technical business by removing IPR
issues from the process. The licensing mode and disclosure requirements are clearly established and any major issue with
either of those items will trigger the creation of an ad hoc PAG to resolve the problem(s)".
What an argument! So why don't remove the W3C itself from the processs? Sure it will be easier for any of the proponents
to make their proprietary standard de-facto by forcing it down the throat of the users of their software, as many of the
underwriters have tried to do in the past. The role of the W3C is not to make things "easy" but to produce usable and
fair standards.

If Microsoft, Apple, HP, Nortel et all want royalties on their patents, then they sould do their own marketing and not
use the W3C as a platform for propaganda of their "better technologies".

Received on Sunday, 30 September 2001 04:04:49 UTC

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