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

RAND comment

From: Glenn Alexander <jxmlisa@online.ln.cn>
Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2001 10:31:56 +0800
Message-Id: <200109300824.EAA30646@tux.w3.org>
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
Although I have no problems with commercial ventures paying royalties for IP 
they profit from, I feel that RAND is likely to lock out developers that are 
not seking to profit from their work (i.e. the free softwaere community).

Completely non-discriminatory royalty disadvantages small developers and only 
advantages large developers (in a world where large developers have 
increasingly become irrelevant to future technology developments).

The FS community is a key component in standards adoption (even you release 
Free software, one component of which I use extensively). Even your own 
sample implimentation software may no longer be distributable Free. Not very 
useful for diseminating standards.

I can think of no examples where for-royalty technologies have become wide 
standards without trouble:

The XT, then the AT are crud implimentations of computers, but they were 
royalty-free designs. Look at what happened to the IBM PS/2.

We are stuck (at least in my part of the world) with USB and the flakey fast 
USB for high-speed peripherals despite the superiority of 1394a. This is not 
wholely due to Apple royalty fees on the technology, but it was a common 
complaint from potential adopters (and Appe's fees are, I feel, quite 
reasonable).

If standards are not free, they will not become standards as others ignore 
them for their own implimentations to save money or because they have no 
money to spend on such things. In fact, I would go as far as to say the FS 
communtiy has enough weight today to set itself up as an alternative 
standards body in cases where royalty-bases *standards* are proposed. (So why 
am I writing this, it doesn't matter anyway!).

I'll finish this now.  It will probably arrive far too late as China telecom 
doesn't staff their servers on weekends or public holidays and it is the 
start of a 9-day holiday and the SMTP is down. Sorry, that's what happens 
when MCSEs are left to run vital services :-(.
--------------------------------------------------------
Glenn Alexander - The man with no surname and a silly hat.
(B.Teach, B.Ed Major IT Education, University of Wollongong Australia)
(Now avaliable in China!)

http://members.ozemail.com.au/~glenalec (last update: 2001.07.29)

I use GNU/Linux: http://www.gnu.org / http://www.linux.org
from Debian: http://www.debian.org
and   KDE  : http://www.kde.org
--------------------------------------------------------
One of these people is not the same:
Laywer, Beaurecrat, UBE sender, MCSE.
A: I lied. They are all equally contemptable.
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Received on Sunday, 30 September 2001 04:24:07 GMT

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