Patents on W3C Standards

I'm writing to express my concern about the W3C's proposed patent
policy. It should not 
be allowed for any company or companies to hold patents on W3C

Allowing W3C standards to be patented would open the door to one of two
end results. One
would be the domination of technologies by companies like Microsoft, and
the prevention of
Free and Open Source software that makes use of those technologies --
causing anyone who
wishes to use future W3C standards to pay licensing fees, and shutting
out any non-commercial
development based on those technologies. 

The other, more likely, avenue is the disregard of the W3C as a
standards body in the future.
If any or all technologies are subject to licensing fees by one or more
companies, they are
likely to be ignored in favor of royalty-free technologies. This should
be blatantly obvious
since there are W3C standards that were created exactly for this reason.

It's also suspect that the W3C has not made very much noise about this
proposal. It seems
odd that the W3C has made a more deliberate effort to solicit public
comment on this issue --
likely because it is obvious that this proposal is NOT in the public

Any patents on technologies submitted to the W3C for consideration as a
standard should
be turned over to the W3C. 

Please do not allow the future of Internet standards to be dominated by
corporations with
no interest but profit. The Internet as it exists today was built
largely on open standards
and for the enjoyment and use of all equally. Please do not allow this
to change.


Joe "Zonker" Brockmeier

Received on Sunday, 30 September 2001 14:03:40 UTC