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Re: Patent terms unacceptable

From: Steven J. DeRose <Steven_DeRose@brown.edu>
Date: Fri, 12 Jan 2001 15:10:08 -0500
Message-Id: <a05001903b68511f855ff@[]>
To: www-xml-linking-comments@w3.org
At 10:59 AM -0500 1/11/01, David E. Cleary wrote:
>I'm sure that I'm not the only one who feels this way, but the terms given
>to use XPointer without getting sued by Sun are unacceptable. XPointer
>either needs to remove any infringing functionality, get a patent license
>from Sun that contains no strings, or invalidate Sun's patent. The precedent
>this specification will set is not a road I want to go down.

I think it would be more helpful to be more specific.

It is not clear to me whether or not XPointer even *does* infringe 
the patent. So what would you specifically propose removing? And what 
would be the consequences to usability and functionality?

What does "no strings" mean? Sun requiring that any other technology 
that "infringes" must be given to W3C to use seems nearly the same as 
many open-source licenses do (and far friendlier than some). What 
would you propose as a specific improvement? Is there a specific use 
case that you think would be wrongly blocked by the present terms?

How do you propose to "invalidate Sun's patent"? A patent is legally 
valid until proven otherwise. If you want to invalidate it, I believe 
you must show specific, public, clear prior art; show intentional 
fraud; or make a clear and specific case for it having been obvious 
at the time.

Short of those specifics, I see no way to carry out any of your 
suggestions. Let's try to actually *solve* the problem.

Steve "not a lawyer" DeRose

Steven_DeRose@Brown.edu; http://www.stg.brown.edu/~sjd
Chief Scientist, Brown Univ. Scholarly Technology Group
Received on Friday, 12 January 2001 17:52:16 UTC

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