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

standarts should be royalty and thus patent free

From: Jon Bendtsen <bendtsen@diku.dk>
Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2001 13:36:55 +0200
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
Message-ID: <20010930133655.A1833@brok.diku.dk>
Dear w3c.

It's come to my attention that you intend to allow your standards
to include patents. Standarts and patents do not go well in hand,
just look at all the trouble with SD-ram and rambus. Lots of time
and resources waisted on lawsuits, instead of creating technology.

You even allow your standarts to be "deceived" the same way rambus
"deceived" the SD-ram standard devellopment. See.
http://linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=2001-09-30-001-20-NW-CY
who makes a writeup of your own information.
"Back-door RAND

If an Advisory Committee Representative to the W3C (each member organisation of the W3C has an ACR) fails to respond to requests for

patent disclosures by default "they will commit their Member company to

license all Essential Claims needed to implement W3C recommendations on

at least RAND terms. This is true whether any personnel from the Member

company participates in a WG or not."

This means oversight, negligence or perhaps deception is rewarded by

requiring the commitment to a RAND license rather than a royalty-free

one."

This doesnt sound good, it does indeed allow "Rambus software inc" 
to trick the other members of w3c, just like rambus the memorymaker
did with the other memory makers, during the SD-ram standard 
devellopment.

Your rules also disallow any different patent royalty payment,
meaning that open source software, which has no money, and is
non-profit implementations can NOT implement your standards.
What a loss. The currently most used websoftware is apache,
which is an open source webserver. See
http://www.netcraft.com/survey/
Apache currently has just over 60% of the webserver market. This
is just possible because Apache is a royalty free product. Because
it is royalty free, the barrier to publish content at the internet
is decreased. Rather than paying for expensive microsoft licenses
to run a webserver, which recent history has shown to be insecure,
they can take an apache webserver, and run it ontop of linux, bsd,
or various other platforms of their choice. If apache wasnt able to
implement a royalty free webserver, microsoft would properly have
a much larger userbase than they do now (see netcraft) and the 
recent viruses would have had an even greater impact.

Not all countries in the world allow software patents. The
internet and thus the web, is an international thing, and not a
local country matter. Almost every corner of the world is able to
or already on the internet. Even if they live in a software patent
free country and thus they can freely implement one of your 
standards, though they are patented, they cant put it on the
internet, because it is also reachable from contries allowing
software patents, and thus they can be sued for royalties just
by using a standard. Standards should be for the public benefit,
for generating improvement and devellopment for the people of the
world, and not to secure one or more induviduals wealth. They are
free to do so by selling a product that follows your standard, or
by trying to make their product a defacto standard by getting
people to use it anyway.

Your change to allow one company to be the SOLE implementor of
your standard. Imagian that this company gives away, or bundles
this product with their other product, but still requires other
implementations to pay (heavy ??) royalties. Noone else wants
to implement the product, because they cant make money doing so
and how can they compete with this other company giving away
their product, or bundling it with another popular product ??
(can you say microsoft windows, and Internet Information Server ??)
Futher more, not even the open source community can devellop
a free, as in speech, or beer, product to compete with this.
Thus we have a monopoly, which has 100% of the market, because
it is your standard, which can be used to get a further monopoly
in other markets, or increase reveny, because of the only 
implementation is given away for free, but the platform needed
to run it costs an arm and a leg.

Standards are good, but only as long as they mean everyone are
free to implement and use them. Keep standards royalty and
patent free.



Jon Bendtsen



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Received on Sunday, 30 September 2001 07:36:58 GMT

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