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[Fwd: [IP] "Written patent policy with clear guidance"]

From: Seth Johnson <seth.johnson@realmeasures.dyndns.org>
Date: Sat, 01 Feb 2003 01:51:13 -0500
Message-ID: <3E3B6E61.2447BBFD@RealMeasures.dyndns.org>
To: C-FIT_Community@realmeasures.dyndns.org, C-FIT_Release_Community@realmeasures.dyndns.org, fairuse-discuss@nyfairuse.org, patents@aful.org, www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org
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(Forwarded from Interesting People list)

-------- Original Message --------
Date: Sat, 01 Feb 2003 01:33:02 -0500
From: Dave Farber <dave@farber.net>
To: ip <ip@v2.listbox.com>

------ Forwarded Message
From: Dave Crocker <dcrocker@brandenburg.com>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 2003 14:09:09 -0800
To: IETF@ietf.org
Subject: "Written patent policy with clear guidance"


Norm Beamer is a partner at Fish & Neave, which specializes
in intellectual property law.  They did the patent for the
Wright Brothers.

I am forwarding his note at his request. This is not
intended to state a concern that the IETF's current efforts
regarding intellectual property are inadequate -- my
non-expert guess is that we currently have pretty good
policies and communicate them well.

However it seems worthwhile to take note of a case and a
warning that an expert thinks is relevant to us.

 Dave <mailto:dcrocker@brandenburg.com>
 Brandenburg InternetWorking <http://www.brandenburg.com>
 t +1.408.246.8253; f +1.408.850.1850

==============Forwarded message===============
From: Beamer, Norman H. <NBeamer@fishneave.com>
To: "Dave Crocker (E-mail)" <dcrocker@brandenburg.com>
Date: Friday, January 31, 2003, 12:25:11 PM

I suggest you pass this on to IETF colleagues

On Wednesday, the Court of Appeals of the Federal Circuit
ruled that Rambus did not commit fraud when it was filing
patents while Rambus employees where on a standards
committee for high speed memory chips.  Rmabus will be
seeking $840 million in royalties from companies such as
Infineon, Hynix (which last I heard had no money) and Micron
(Rambus collects a 3% royalty for its chip, and this chip
market is a $28 billion industry, resulting in the 840
figure). On this news, Rambus stock rose 57%, or 4.25, to
11.69 dollars a share.

To me there is a blunt message in the decision: that it is
time that all engineering standards committees mature in
their handling of patent issues.  The stakes are ever
increasing with these standards, and everyone knows that
everyone is playing patent games.  Any committee with less
than clear and explicit rules about disclosure for patent
activities by committee members should not whine later on. 
In the eyes of the CAFC, the committee that Rambus employees
was on didn't clearly define the rules, so that Rambus'
actions were not sanctionable.  For example, in the ruling,
we see language such as:

    "In this case there is a staggering lack of defining
details in the ... patent policy" ..... "When competitors
participate in an open standards committee, their work
necessitates a written patent policy with clear guidance on
the committee's intellectual property position."

===========End of original message text===========

------ End of Forwarded Message

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