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Re: patent pending -- is this a bad precedent

From: Tony Sanders <sanders@earth.com>
Date: Fri, 20 Feb 1998 12:04:55 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <199802201704.KAA03856@austin.bsdi.com>
To: www-talk@w3.org
Daniel Hellerstein writes:
> If so, my primary reaction is that this is a BAD thing.  Despite it's possible
> technical merits, and the fact that Mr. Mills seems like a reasonable
> Putting on my theoretical hat: the market is notoriously bad at providing
> "public goods", of which tcp/ip et al  is a classic example (my use of this
> knowledge does not cost you anything).  The genius behind the internet
> is that this public goods aspect was recognized, at the same time that
> sufficient incentives and structure were provided for coherent growth.  
> That is: a  pure "let the market decide" approach probably has more
> costs then benefits.

Or another way to look at it, the market HAS decided and we decided
we didn't want to pay people for things that are trivial and obvious,
like putting information on a web page in a way that is computer
readable (uh, isn't that the whole point of the web?).  That only
serves to undermine the whole patent process, which is already on
shakey ground because of unscrupulous patenters, lax patent policies
and a lack of expertise of computing and software in the patent

Maybe we need to start an organizational fund to fight patent abuses
such as trying to patent an HTML tag.

Anyone for the GILU? -- Global Information Liberation Union

Or maybe the NMFSP -- No More Software Patents
Received on Friday, 20 February 1998 15:17:13 UTC

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