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Draft Patent Policy Comment

From: John K. Hohm <jhohm@acm.org>
Date: Tue, 31 Dec 2002 12:05:09 -0600
Message-ID: <1041357909.3e11dc55213e2@redemption.trnty.edu>
To: www-patentpolicy-comment@w3.org

I am mostly in favor of the posted draft patent policy.  However, there is one 
serious problem with the proposed policy that would render it useless for 
protecting my (and others') rights to write Free Software licensed under the 
GNU General Public License (GPL) and similar licenses that restrict further 
restrictions.

The problem lies in clause 3 of Section 3, which states that the license "may 
be limited to implementations of the Recommendation, and to what is required by 
the Recommendation".  That clause can be taken to mean that software which is 
written to implement the Recommendation, and then used in part for another 
purpose, could violate a patent that otherwise satisfied the policy.  The GPL 
does not allow the use of licensed software to be restricted in such a way as 
would be required to avoid violating a patent that uses clause 3.
Received on Tuesday, 7 January 2003 02:06:51 GMT

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