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Royalty-free patents in w3c

From: Fernandez Martinez, Alejandro <a.fernandez.martinez@ibermatica.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2002 01:17:18 +0100
Message-ID: <B0730B2317E4D51182E60050DA1414A0A0B5BA@GSDMBXMA>
To: "'www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org'" <www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org>
Cc: "'gnu@gnu.org'" <gnu@gnu.org>
Dear working group,

The policy of allowing patents to be incorporated in w3c standards is not a
happy one, since (even if patent holders waive the royalties associated with
them) they impose unhealthy restrictions on the developer community.

Internet standards have often been extended by commercial companies and
communities, to suit its particular needs -- and sometimes these extensions
have been folded into . But the section "W3C Royalty-Free (RF) Licensing
Requirements" of the working draft "Royalty-Free Patent Policy" available at

    "3. [the license] may be limited to implementations of the
Recommendation, and to what is required by the Recommendation;"
which seems to imply that an implementor would not be free to extend any
such Recommendation beyond its original scope. This goes a step beyond in
the separation of publication of standards and use of standards: a
Recommendation that cannot be extended by third parties has more risks of
not being adopted, and as such become just an empty standard.

The w3c has done a great work in the past of unifying a diversity of uses,
and making viable standards out of a mess of implementations. Let's hope
this remains its primary goal.

Thanks for you attention.

Un saludo,

Alex Fernández.
Received on Sunday, 15 December 2002 19:55:30 UTC

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